Category Archives: Nature

Nature’s First Green Is Gold

“When I stepped out into the bright sunlight…”

The first and the last words of The Outsiders, a movie that quickly became one of my favorite a pre-teen. I do know not know what drew me into the story. It could have been the adorable and quite handsome young Patrick Swayze, C. Thomas Howell, Ralph Macchio, Rob Lowe, Matt Dillon, Emilio Estevez, and Tom Cruise. It was more than bubbling hormones though. I not only loved the movie, I loved the book.

In the eighth grade when required to do a report on the book of our choice, I chose The Outsiders. Honestly, I think I related to them somehow. Ponyboy and Johnny the tightest of friendships, even to laying to Johnny laying down his life. Each of the boys in the story carried trait I could relate to.

Not understood. Angry. Funny. Desire to be loved. Together with friends, but still outsiders.

When I presented my oral report, I began by quoting Alfred R. Ferguson’s poem that Johnny loved so well.

Nature’s first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leafs a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.

It is ironic to me now that I quoted the poem. Not really understanding what the words meant, though Johnny explained them to Pony in a letter.

The irony lies in the loss of my innocent childhood. It was gold to me. Beautiful, fun, exciting, perfect, innocent, but one event remembered has marred the golden beauty of my innocence. I do not know if my words capture the feeling and the meaning I am trying to convey and the relationship I feel to the poem. I just thought it interesting how it unknowingly personified my life.

I need to apologize for my lack of posts the last couple of days. I will sit down and start a post and something will distract me, and it is almost like “SQUIRREL” and I am mentally and/or physically gone! I am so easily distracted and completely lose the train and the track the train of thought was on. I hope to do better, but I cannot make promises. I know my brain, and it does not like to cooperate these days.

With that said, I am extremely sleepy. I think I might take a nap. I hope you have a wonderful Wednesday. Thank you for reading my blog!

~Hope

P.S. This is a picture of a male red cardinal on a red bud tree outside my parents home yesterday. Isn’t he gorgeous?
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Taco Soup, Roku, and a Warm Blanket

Georgia girls are not used to cold weather, so I am shivering like crazy! I love it though. My house smells of Taco Soup, a blanket up to my chin, and several good movies on Roku.

Yesterday seemed long, but gave me hope. Two doctor visits, one with my new psychiatrist and the other with my therapist. I think I am going really like my new psychiatrist. I felt like a person with him, not a project or a number. He has experience working with DID, and gave me confidence that together our goal would be to reintegrate. I cried happy, real happy tears for myself, the first ones in a long time. I feel like I have a good complete team now to help me and support me.

At therapy I learned circular breathing meditation and received the assignment to practice at least three times daily. She also sent me home we an adorable children’s book called “Moody Cow Meditates”.

Last night I did not have the same struggles and tensions that I generally do on the days after therapy. I know that my husband appreciated it just about as much as I did. I am usually a emotionally raw mess.

Today, this moment, is good. I am very grateful for that.

Sasquatch, Two Counties Away, Great!

So as I read the local new bulletins this morning I could not help but chuckle. I am very glad that I am not afraid of big hairy ape-like creatures wandering the woods. Yeah, just a few miles up the road, two counties over, the police received two separate 911 calls reporting Sasquatch sightings. It was extremely windy last night and every time I let my dogs out they barked at the wind and the shadows caused by the movements of the trees. Or….Has Sasquatch made it to Georgia?

Last night my dreams were filled with anxiety and frustration. I attempted going shopping, my husband pushing me around in a wheelchair. There were so many people in the store. I kept trying to find my family, but everything was different. I would see them at the end of aisles, but with so many people between us, Tracy could not navigate me to them. I started panicking. Similar to how Bill Bixby would not want the Hulk to come, I was fighting Little Hope. Yelling for Tracy to get me out of the store. We kept hitting dead ends, since the store been rearranged. I jumped and started to run. This woke me up, finding myself with my arms forward, and my legs bent to run.

I used to love to dream. Seeing and spending time with those that have passed. Having adventures in a world of my creating. Now sleep is fitful. Lately my dreams are dark and scary. Last week it was as if I was sitting in a 5D theatre all night, reliving again and again that awful day. Each of my senses involved in the nightmare. I asked my husband the next morning if I moved much the night before, and he said yes, I kept him and the dogs awake all night. I begged him to please wake me if I ever do that again.

Today, this moment, is okay. I am at my parents. Daddy sits in his chair, dozing, waking to change the channel occasionally. Mother in hers, on her Ipad, holding Lillie and Heidi their Chihuahuas. Being with them brings me some comfort, though my insides still shake. I love my family.

I did not take anything out for supper. My husband is used to that. He gets maybe one or two descent meals a week. Tonight we might have stuffed bake potatoes. Quick and easy.

One day.

Guard Frog

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This guy is growing, emphasis on growing, into an awesome guard frog. He is HUGE, looks like a mutant when next to his froggy pals. That is a watering bucket outside my door that he was proudly perched on when we came home last night.

Tell All Tuesday: Something Strange and Organic

In June of 2010 we flew to Oregon to visit my husband’s family. While there we visited the wonderful Tilamook Cheese Factory. They really do have the best cheeses, over priced, but wow are they delicious and so is the ice cream. Yum-Yum!

In the factory there is a cute little gift shop. Mother-In-Law wanted me to have a souvenir from the trip so she purchased me a cute journal. Cow Patterned.
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It is absolutely adorable with its cow spots, and a special journal it is. No, not only because my in-laws gave it to me, but because of what it is made of.

Recycled Cow Poo!

When leaving Oregon, we flew out of PDX. As I reached the TSA scan, the agent pulled both my husband and I out of the line. Re-scanned my carry-on not once, not twice, not even three or four times, but five times, after pulling everything out and rummaging through it. Scanning both of us also, then calling a manager over and saying, “I have checked and check and rechecked, some strange organic material is showing up, but nothing is in here.” The manager checked sent it through again and asked us what we thought it might be, I had a lighthouse that I bought from Tilamook. I told them to open it and check it out. Nothing. When they were sufficiently satisfied that we were not terrorists and not hiding anything, they cleared us, threw everything back in my bag, and sent us on our way.

As we were in the air, the pilot had just announced we were over Denver,I busted out laughing. I woke my husband up. “THE COW POO JOURNAL!!! THE COW POO JOURNAL!!! That’s what was strange and organic! THE COW POO JOURNAL!!”

Muscle Cars and Mashed Potatoes

Last night went great. Both my husband and I admittedly nervously anticipated seeing his pal, like any reunion, but after the first practical joke the ice was broke.

We asked the front desk clerk, a super nice lady, to call him and tell him someone was messing with his car. He bound out of his room like Clark Kent changes into Superman, though he did not take time to tie his shoes.

We sat at Ole Times until they kicked us out, literally. Several times before we actually went and made a trip to the buffet the waitress staff checked our ticket to make sure we had ordered buffet because we had sat for so long just drinking our sodas and talking.

Or in my case, listening. I heard more about cars and muscle cars last night than any woman needs to know. Yes, I do live in the South, and yes, I like Nascar, but not because I know what is under the hoods. I will leave that to my very brilliant and and capable husband. Thankfully the coversation was laced last night with humor, and other times I just tried to follow. Humoring them with a “wow” and “really” and “uh-uh” as their body cues and voices prompted me.

Let me see if I can get this right for muscle car lovers out there. He has a blacked out, Mustang 500GT Shelby Cobra with many customizations. I heard alot of blahblahblahblahblah last night. but they were happy, and that was what was important. The hubs needs his buddy. He has had one other friend and his wife visit since we were married. His daughters when we could get them to come, that was only the first couple of years, and that is it. He says that the blood running through his veins is now Southern purged of I suppose.

The phone, roads, and planes go both ways. I am glad that this buddy made the effort to connect with him and see him, it means so much to both of us. I will put up with muscle car talk for that.

Songs of the Heart Sunday: One Clear Voice

“And, behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the LORD; but the LORD was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the LORD was not in the earthquake: And after the earthquake a fire; but the LORD was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice” (1 Kings 19:11-12.)

I am so grateful that I have been taught to listen for that voice, recognize, and that this weekend I have been given the strength and courage to act on those promptings.

Yesterday my husband and I had a wonderful day together, most of it enjoying the beauties of the surrounding islands. It was absolutely wonderful and relaxing. Nature is providing becoming a refuge for me. I loved sitting on the bench listening to the waves, the birds, the families, while feeling the wind on my face, and trying to capture on my camera the peace I felt.

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When the evening storms started to roll in I made my way back to the car a few feet away. Even driving through the storm was peaceful, almost symbolic, thunderheads around, rain coming down, yet bright sun rays shown through. I just knew that I would see “my rainbow”. I even changed my camera lens preparing for the gift that I knew He would send me, as if it was already in the works, claiming it as mine.

He sent me a rainbow, but not in the form of a colorful bow in the sky, but an email from MJ’s Mom. I claimed it as my rainbow.

When we came home, my husband decided that we would go ahead and pack up the two modems that we need to send back to Comcast. We found one, no problem. Packed it up ready to go. The other completely eluded us. We looked everywhere, for hours. My relaxing peaceful day gone. I was now anxious and frustrated, and experiencing the negative feelings about myself that automatically come as a result of my PTSD. I prayed several times as I looked. Finally after my ideas of where it could be were completely exhausted, and I was so triggered into negative thoughts about myself and my traumas I decided I needed to step back and work on my pictures to get into the now, and a peaceful point.

The more I tried the more I wondered where the modem was. Again, I prayed. This time pouring my heart out in gratitude for a great day, and pleading for the return of that peace. I told my Father in Heaven that I had no idea, where the modem is, but I knew that He did. I begged that He led me to where is was. I turned back to work on the pictures again hoping to feel a prompting to where the ellusive modem was hiding.

On our desk sits notebook that I scribble and doodle on. While waiting for the next batch of pictures to download, I scribbled.

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“Where’s the modem” (The black out is where I had scribbled my full name.) “I’m so frustrated. Urgh!!”

No sooner had I written those words did I hear that familiar voice. The voice that has guided me so many times before. “I am going to see if you trust me. Go relax in your chair in the livingroom.” when the Spirit speaks directly to you, you need to act. Relaxing. Not so easy, but I had asked, and I wanted to trust.

I went to my chair, but I continued to look. I looked on both end tables, and under them. I heard my name, then the word, “Relax.”

Inhaling deeply and exhaling slowing, I rested my head on the back of my chair. As I did my eyes rested straight across the room on our metal cd rack full of cds, my husband’s cane hanging from it obscuring the view of anything behind it, unless you were sitting in my chair. You could see maybe a half an inch or an inch at the very least. In that gap I saw the hidden, most literally, modem. I had such an overwhelming feeling of “Be Still and Know the I Am God.”

Heavenly Father knows cares about even the smallest of our problems. In the scheme on the world’s struggles, a lost modem ranks pretty low, but as His daughter nothing or no one ranks higher. He loves each of us so much. He blesses us for acting on those promptings we receive.

He knows each of us personally and by name. He stands beside us during our life’s teaching moments as they provide a springboard for other moments.

For me He knew that I needed that experience last night in trusting Him. Acting on voice of the Spirit, to feeling closer to the Spirit than I have in a while, to feel strong enough to recognize then act on the prompting today that will be pivitol in my journey of healing.

My alarm was set for 7:30. It did not go off. Awakened at 8:30, it would have been easy to to say there is no way, since Church starts at 9:00. However, I quickly did my hair and makeup, dressed, and jumped in the car. It was I few minutes before 9:00. My husband had decided to stay home.

As I turned on the highway to head towards Church, I saw him. My childhood friend, the one who many years ago raped me. My initial feeling was the fight or flight, then something else happened. It was a peace that prompted me it was okay, and it was time to pull over and talk to him. Reason told me it was crazy, Little Hope did not like the idea, but peace and the Spirit spoke calming assurance that it was going to be okay. I pulled several feet in front of him lest the closer he came, I change my mind. He walked by my window, I called his name. Reminded him who I was. He said he knew who I was, he made comments about where my Church was when I was little, so he did know exactly who I was. Other memories of our youth, he did not remember, or atleast his mouth could not relay what his mind was thinking. He many years of hard living on drugs as left him very schitzopranic like. As parted ways, he told me to be careful out there. That brought tears to my eyes. I still need to process alot from the meeting, but I feel like it is a possitive step in my healing journey.

Again I am so very grateful that I was able to talk to my friend, parent little Hope as she was afraid and let her know that I can take over and live, and we are going the be okay. Only through the comforting voice of the Spirit was I able to do these things. I am eternally grateful.

Find the Good Friday: A Match Made In Heaven

I love a good romance or friendship story. My heart has a special connection with those  the world sees as disabled or handicapped. I love dogs, and stories of rescues. My Enos was on his way to the pound, a high kill pound when we rescued him.

So you can imagine the feeling in my heart as I read the story of Eve and Dillon this morning in the Huffington Post.

So sweet.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/01/marleys-mutts-eve-dillon_n_3685072.html?utm_hp_ref=good-news

Take A Look Thursday: Daffy, Donald, Huey, Dewey, Louie, and Daisy

I gave you a little preview of our date night ducks last week. Today you get the rest of the photo shoot. Shoot is not a good word to use around ducks I suppose, unless you are the hunter, but these ducks are so pretty. Enjoy.

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