911 Memorial, New York City 2017

March 19, 2017

It has been a long time since the world sat in silent horror watching the airplanes crash into the trade towers. I can remember the surreal  emotions of terror that the attack  evoked. Sitting watching this knowing it was real and yet it wasn’t because it was on television where all kinds of awful things transpire that have no effect on my  or my neighbors lives. In some distant place called New York City thousands had just been murdered in front of me and the horror was somehow distant, intangible. I was numb to the emotions and my life went on with a prayer for the survivors I moved on with my life always aware in a  corner of my mind that somebody hated my country enough to kill innocent people to make a point. That somebody [we were told] was al-Qaeda, a Muslim sect that decided we were the enemy and had to be destroyed.

I am not sure they accomplished what they set out to do.

What I see is that in the terror attacks America was bonded together with most of the world by a common insult, this one act precipitated a war that targeted a country and a religion. The country was “guilty” of harboring  terrorists [now you can say what ever you like hind site is 20/20] and the religion was responsible for encouraging Jihad on the infidels. The war is still not over, it is hard to defeat  an opinion through violence, but we had to do something. Turning the other cheek only meant disrespect for those that lost their lives with no clear reason. An eye for an eye seemed to be the only response strong enough to avenge them.

I had never been to New York City until this week. I came as a lot of people, a tourist. This is where the immigrants entered the country and the welcoming Lady of Liberty resides. I wanted to see the Statue of Liberty and Brooklyn Bridge. I wanted to visit the place that our founding fathers had walked and the seat of the financial world. The 911 Memorial was on that list, but not my main interest.

March 25, 3017

Now, I have had a week to digest the sights and sounds of the past week I am still wrestling with the impact on me.

Upon entering the memorial the remnants the Twin Towers are displayed as evidence of the destruction. The presence of these twisted pieces of super structure are reminders of the tortured buildings and lives  of the survivors. The galleries are full of the pictures of the destruction. It is black, dark and somber. You don’t notice at first, but as you ascend into the exhibit the odors of hot steel and crumbling cement start to permeate the air. This smell comes very noticeable as you get deeper into the experience. I didn’t notice the acrid odor of jet fuel being in the mix, but the smell is effective in giving a feel of what the day was like. There are pictures of the victims of the attack that cover the walls of one room.  As you proceed you start hearing the  voices of the ones left, family, coworkers and friends saying the names of the victims and their relationship. This personal touch gives them life and makes them real.  Then as you descend to the lowest level, you find the remains of the fire engine that was mashed by derbies. More memorabilia, the concrete stairs that are pulverized by falling concrete and pictures of the skyline before and during the disaster. The billowing smoke over the towers being dark and angry looking.

All in all it is worth the visit. I can’t imagine visiting with personal experience [It is emotional when you only have watched the horror develop from afar]. The emotions would be very hard to handle.

What I was left with is, this was a horror visited on thousands of innocent victims and only served to galvanize the country against a country and religion. The ones of that country and religion that are innocent and were just as horrified are also victims. They have been vilified because of the actions of radical extremists. We are as a nation punishing them.

We have erected a shrine to the victims to remind us.

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Daily struggles

 

Today is a day that resembles most days, I am sitting here bemoaning that I have so much to do and I don’t want to do it. Actually that is a lie, I want it done with a wave of the hand so that I can go out do what I really want to do. What I really want to do is go out and be who my mind says I am and not the person that those around me want me to be.

I have been diagnosed with MS , with that diagnosis came much different treatment from every one around me. Granted, those that went through the first years after diagnosis wit me remember how helpless I was at that time. The first years caused me to lose much of my independence, I was part time is a wheel chair and mostly dependent on a cane to walk alone. One of the things that it took me a long time to [and still haven’t completely mastered] understand the depression that comes with MS.

My neurologist told me that all things that happen are not going to be the MS, I still have other things that will affect me. I guess I was doomed to continue on with the Seasonal Affective  Disorder [SAD] and the drive to be outside doing things in the open air. I have always been active, growing a 50 x 50 garden, canning all the harvest we didn’t eat, raising a large family consisting of his mine and ours with all of the inherent challenges  and working full time. As the children were leaving and going on to fulfill their dreams my diagnosis came.

That is off subject, now back to struggles.

When I woke up this morning the sun was shining in it’s brilliant winter way. It is so deceiving, the sun is so inviting and yet it is blow zero out there. I am torn between going out  and shoveling my way out of the driveway so I can go to town tomorrow or staying in and cleaning [I hate that job, especially when I live with a slob (me) that chooses to leave things out] or get on the computer. I guess you see which won out. These decisions only lead to the depression. I can’t do as much as I want, I envision the Wonder Woman that I used to be and am disappointed with what is left. I don’t dwell on that much or I would be crazy, I have learned to forgive my self for not being 20 anymore.

I have people around me that won’t let me do things because of the diagnosis or try to “protect” me. They forget, I am the person that is living inside this body and completely aware of it’s limitations. I am not a dare devil, I don’t want to get hurt but I am still me. I love animals and machinery and digging holes, being outside is the way I survive.

Cleaning house is depressing and THAT is not MS.  Cleaning a house that insists on being dirty is just downright frustrating. Growing a large garden when there is no one but me and an occasional visitor is counter productive. Winter is not conducive to those activities, it is too cold for anyone to be out there for any length of time I am gone to much to take care of it anyway, I have itchy feet I can’t seem to stay home for any length of time.

I am forgetful [MS or age], sometimes and struggle with that. I jump from one project to another, that is defiantly not MS. I have to design a way to stop that but I’ve been working on it for 50 years, still have not found a solution. The only thing that has worked is being a follower, following someone around and allowing them to set the agenda. It is harder to get distracted when you have someone around to keep you focused.

I can’t do as much as I want but that is age not MS.

My new [old] hobby is computer related that invites me to sit in front of the computer and  get lost spending too much time sitting down. I am fully engaged, excited about the possibilities and loose the hours of the day.  How many calories does that burn? I get more exercise going to get a snack. My other winter hobbies are also sit down projects.

The daily struggles are, I guess something that we all have to live with. I want it fixed and I want it fixed NOW.   I am impatient.

OK that is off my chest,  I’ll resume my struggles.

 

I’m a genius!!!! And I thought I was totally balmy.

Like I said, I am always composing [talking to myself], I just have to start writing it down. Today, a cousin posted a link on FB and I read the article.

I discovered this author believes  talking to ones self means you are a genius. I could call my self a lot of things, genius is not ever on the list except in a disparaging tone [ex. Well, THAT was a genius move].  Stick around long enough and you learn a lot of things, this is one of those things. Here is the link to the article, draw  your own conclusions.

http://eclecticread.topratedviral.com/article/science-says-people-who-talk-to-themselves-are-geniuses/promote/1001135

I am going to quit adulting

On my trip back home from being a Grandma, I made a decision. I don’t want to be an adult any more. I am tired of being grown up. I want to have someone else clean my house, wash my cloths and cook my dinner while I go play. My mother did most of this until I was big enough to do my own. I washed dishes and was responsible for my own stuff in the room I shared with my sister.  My sister was  six years younger and we weren’t concerned with neat and clean. So there was no real problem there.

I will still be Grandma, that is something that I enjoy and I am not responsible for the out come. I just need to be the one that can drive and interpret. I do not need to worry about as many things, I just need to be generally logical and have the best in mind for us.

I want to get a tent and go on “walk about”.  My man friend worries that a bear will try to join me. If it is cold, I could use the bear’s warmth. I love and totally respect the slithering critters of the world so they aren’t a problem for me. Like I told him, I am not afraid of the boggy man. Walk about is about all I can afford, using anything but Shanks Mare is prohibitively expensive.

Maybe it will be my birthday present for my 70th birthday in a few years, by then I will have been able to collect what I need and build some stamina. Maybe .

The greenhouse is up and now has some of the things that I took out of my last greenhouse in it. I’m ready to start dreaming about little leaves popping up through the soil. Now starts the joy.

 

 

Well, life gets in the way.

I am not sure how the super efficient get anything done. I am totally befuddled.

How does one have a life with all the plans and schemes that are unique to them and have a relationship with others? It escapes me. I am afraid I don’t do it very well. Life to me is a joint operation with those that want to share it, I am finding that it is very hard to do and maintain any semblance of sanity. I did it for 40 years, but, then I had a partner who shared my belief of relationship.

My daughter is needing my help, I could just turn it over to paid people but that is not my style. I don’t get the information that I need and she gets belligerent because she can with social workers and care attendants.   My granddaughter is needing help and has had frustration navigating  the  system. She is 500 miles away and I am going to go help her this next week. While I am there I am going to trade lodging for being available for two other grandchildren while my daughter and son-in-law travel to meet her oldest daughter and son-in-law.

Still I need to get My greenhouse up. It is a work in progress. The wind is a problem, running errands and keeping up with the demands of life, is going to take precedent I guess.

I get a new member of the family today. Miss Ford, my recently departed friend’s cat is coming to live with me. I have missed having a cat around. I have three little dogs [one abandoned me for the rugged life of chasing skunks and gophers on the ranch], but he is still mine. The traitor is a rescue, I rescued him from a life in town, he loves the great outdoors and is a hunter extraordinaire,  his favorite fragrance these days  is skunk.  The matriarch’s  “mom”  passed on and made her an orphan. And there is the upstart of a yappy little pound dog who is just developing a personality unique to her, she is coming into her own.

There is nothing like having  cat curl up next to you and turn her purr motor on. It is soothing and calming. So looking forward to picking her up. I miss it.

Rememberance-A tribute to a Friend

I just got a call from my friend’s son. Holly is gone! Gone, gone to The Great
Father.

She died not quite as she had lived, she passed without fanfare or recognition. She was bigger than life, full of emotion and drama. Her death seems an anticlimactic end to her ebullient life.

She wanted to be everyone’s friend, but cross her she was the worst kind of enemy.

Her life was filled with tragedy and joy. Her mother a full blooded Chickasaw, was an alcoholic and at a young age Holly had to care for her. There were no other children with which to share the heartache or burden. Her father had left her mother several years before, she was truly alone. Holly spoke with bittersweet tones about her mother and was matter of fact when recounting life with her mother before she succumbed to alcohol.  Holly made that gruesome discovery alone. She had family  in close proximity, but I never got the feeling she was close to them. Her father lived a long away away and had started a new life.

Her father was her hero and savior. He took her home to his new wife and family, finally she had siblings.

Holly was such a free spirit She loved her sons [she had two living] and her only grandchild, they were her joys. Her devotion was not questioned but accepted and returned.

I can’t cry for her, any tears would be for me and my loss. She has spent the last several years in constant pain and discomfort. Now she is released from the pain, the constant doctor and hospital visits and the assault to her dignity.

She is now with all those that went before and I pray comfortable, finally!

I will miss you Holly,  there is now another hole in the fabric of my life.

 

 

 

 

Best Laid Plans

Well, best laid plans. I was sitting here staring at the screen thinking I need to do something, anything.  The post-it note peeked out from under some junk on my desk and reminded me that I made a commitment to do better.

Then the thought, we all want to do better. The thing is, how can we do better if life jumps in and takes over?  I have taken a few days to go play in the snow and worn myself out. That’s why I am sitting here just staring at the computer screen, just trying to re-group.  With Soul Town  station crooning Not On The Outside in my ear, I am reflecting on the last week. The rich voice of Marvin Gaye changes to You Are All I Need To Get By” and then I wonder what is it we all need to get by. THEN, Boogie Fever by the Sylvers comes on and I want to get up and boogie.

I think I know, if every one is as distracted as I am, it’s a wonder that any thing gets done. My commitments are easily pushed aside by the thing that is in front right now. If I don’t get single minded then I start “chasing rabbits”. As I sit here and wonder where the next “rabbit” will carry me I need another cup of coffee.

On the way to get my coffee, I stepped on a rock in my bare feet and remembered I need to sweep the floor. As I stood pouring the coffee I noticed the stove is needing washed off and the few dishes in the sink need to be put in the dishwasher. Walking back down the hall to the computer I noticed the hallway is needing swept and mopped.

Now, what was that I was saying about rabbits?