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?
Cardinal

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My Hero Has Left The Building

We all have heroes. Some heroes earn that esteemed title from the quiet acts of service performed daily, others stumble into hero-ship by merits of their profession.

Webster defines a hero as:

A person who is admired for great or brave acts or fine qualities; a person who is greatly admired.

I am going to try really hard to put into words my garbled feelings about hero-worship, and how the protective walls I held around one of my heroes came crushing around his memory today.

To understand how much I adored this person, let me give you some history. I was only three years and nine months old on August 16, 1977. I am pretty sure even then, I loved the gorgeous and talented man who died that day with all the love my little girl heart could muster. My Mother had plans on going to his next concert in our area. Yes, we wereare a family of screaming-crying Elvis fans.

As I grew, TBS always honored Elvis in January for his birthday week, playing his movies each day, and again in August, to celebrate his memory. I would watch them ritualistically and make sure I had my VHS set to record. Often with the other children went out to play, if Elvis was on, I was glued to the TV. We even had an 8 track player in the bathroom, anytime I went in there, I would put in Aloha from Hawaii. I loved Elvis.

Photo Credit:  wikimedia.org
Photo Credit: wikimedia.org

He did not just sing his country and rock and roll, the man could sing gospel music like he was singing with heaven’s choir. WOW. So touching. Just beautiful.

You know the first chapter book I check out from the public library to read? Elvis and Me, by Priscilla.

As I grew up, I often joked, it is probably a good thing that I was only a child when he passed, because if I had been an adult when he was alive, I am pretty sure I would have been a groupie and be one of the many women saying I had his love child. Of course I was joking, but dang, that man had it going on. Want to know a secret, my husband has lips that look like Elvis’. Shhhh…yes, that scored him points!

So anyway, hero-worship. I did not worship Elvis, but he was on a pretty high pedestal. Even knowing that he used drugs and that chances are his heart attack was caused by the drugs, I still held him up there. His looks and his voice, and the things I had heard the had done for charity. No one was going to knock him off his pedestal, well, no one but…Elvis.

I watched footage of a concert today that knocked the King right off, and broke my heart. He was obviously drunk or high during this concert, and the language he used was completely inappropriate. He was talking out of his mind, and then he said something thing after using a string of explicatives about cutting someone’s tongue out more explicatives. Sadly, he proved the point of the anonymous person he was threatening.

It made me very sad. Sad that he was so out of control, and I knew how his earthly story would end. Sad that after all of these years, I do not look at him the same way. Childhood innocence gone.

But maybe there is a lesson to be learned. Am I someone’s hero? Though it would be a heavy weight to carry, I know people are always watching.

After writing that, I paused and reminded myself. You never know who is watching your example as their guide. I began asking myself questions…

Are you showing your mistakes, but correcting them? Are you performing acts of service? Do you exhibit courage and moral integrity when faced with adversity? Are you loyal and devoted to the causes you pledge yourself to? Do you persevere when every fiber of your being wants to throw the towel in? Do you use your talents and skills to better the world around you?

We can all be heroes. I think we need to start with being our own hero, developing the qualities that make a true hero, not the status quo we are used to in choosing entertainment, politicians, and athletes such as Elvis, Justin Beiber, Obama, and other so-called “heroes”. They eventually make huge mistakes broadcast publicly, often lie about it, disappoint us again and again,shake foundation, causing us to question ourselves and our place in the world.

Be your own hero. You can do it!

Thanks for reading! ~Hope

Oh What A Beautiful Morning!

Oh What A Beautiful Morning!

Photo Credits: oscarroadtrip.com

I woke up bright and early. Called my most favorite triple play cable provider, to resolve our issues. I came pretty close to blowing a gasket when I found out that the gateway was not shipped yesterday as I was promised. Yep, burnt this gal’s biscuits.

I asked the status of my discounts. He saw where the discount for the shipping was to be given, but not the service. Oh no, I do not think so. When I was off the phone with him, I had a credit of $32 dollars on my bill, and his name and a confirmation.

Then on to the next representative because Mr. Credit had said that he could only issue the credits, he could not resolve the shipping issue. The clincher was that it was not put in for overnight, but that it would ship in 3-5 days. UNACCEPTABLE! (I do want to say that the representatives I have spoken with are very very nice, and I am trying to keep my cool while demanding what I am paying for. In my demanding I apologize that they are cleaning up the mess of others and getting the brunt of my wrath.)

So, LaQuesha, oh dear LaQuesha, she updated the system so I should get the gateway Monday or Tuesday. She is not sure with all the changes if they are shipping on Saturday. If they do, she has for it to go out, if not it WILL go out on Monday Priority Overnight.

So to calm myself after the events this morning it is a musical morning. I am in a Broadway morning. Yeah, finding all kinds of musicals on YouTube.

Make it a beautiful day! ~Hope

Free Frustration Kit Enclosed

This morning began with my nerves on edge, I am not really sure why, I was just off. Now I realize it was an omen. I decided after I finished a couple of things around the house that I would wander down to my parents.

Let the adventures begin.

We uninstalled their old tv, installed a new, uninstalled the new, and reinstalled the old. Come to find out Vizio HD TV’s do not work well with DirectTV’s standard receiver, and that is a gross understatement. The picture was awful. I do not blame it so much on the Vizio TV as I do DirectTV and Vizio not playing well together. So it was back to their standard def, that looks high def, and then working on installing the ROKU on the TV in another room.

While working on their tv, the hubs called and said that he just left Comcast and they did not have the correct modem for us. Yeah, the one they said they had, and were noting in the system for us. So I called Comcast and let them know just how unhappy I was. This was the hubs second trip to third trip to a Comcast store. I thought I had someone who knew what she was doing, and she stated our correct Gateway would be Priority shipped on their dime plus credits for the time we have been without. I THOUGHT she had it all together, that is until tonight. I’ll go into that in a moment. I don’t know whether to say bless her heart or mine.

When I walked in from my parents house the hubs was hanging up from talking to Comcast. He had actually picked up another SMC (AKA piece of poop), he was activating it. However when he hung up, nothing was activated. Nothing. So he said something like, “Tag you are it.”

I called Comcast. I talked to a really nice young man. I did however, cover up the phone a few times to laugh. He sounded just like the guy from the original Children of the Corn, the one that says, “He wants you too Malachi.” This guy was super nice though, thankfully. He worked with me for a long time trying to activate it, but nothing. I told him my assumption was that it was never set to factory settings, that they just gave us a pooped out one. He agreed. My reasoning came from not being able to use the factory user name and password to get into the gateway user panel. Okay, geek talk.

Our conversation ended with, “I’m sorry you are going to need more technical help than I have.” Sigh. I really did not want to call back.

Now, since I have dealt with these messed up modems for several weeks now, I know how to do a factory reset. I looked it up on my phone to make sure. Low and behold, after I did that, I could get into the gateway AND we could connect. It still buffers because it is a SMC piece of work.

So I am sitting here relieved when what happens? I get an email from Comcast. Yay, my email works. Wait, what does this say??? It states my bill is going up from $72 to $86 month because of my “new modem”. What the heck? I am naughty word angry now. I have done the work for your technical support and you still have given me a piece of poop and charging me extra for it. I. DON’T. THINK. SO.

My husband said if they want to do that then we need to put K-Y all over that modem and tell them where they can put it. I must say, that is tempting. Even more so when I tried calling them to ask about it and they said they were closed for the day. 24/7 Customer Service my big toe.

Have I mentioned that i do not handle stress well? Wow, I think I need to find a Xanax and try to calm down. I am about ready to try the stress reliever below.

Can I just ask who turned my Friday into a Thursday??
frustration_relief

You Can’t See Me

Photo Credits: whatishowto.net
Photo Credits: whatishowto.net

I really hate days like today. My anxiety is through the roof. I have been working on my to list, each item giving me a greater measure of anxiety as I move to it. You would think that completing items would give me a sense of accomplishment, not so much right now. I am putting the completed items on my calendar, because I am pretty sure I will not remember accomplishing them.

Several items include dealing with other people over the phone. I have been okay with that, today I try to practice breathing and now listening to music to calm myself. So frustrating.

Yesterday I was looking at my Ipad and saw messages from a friend of mine. He sent me pictures of the beach that he lives near with snow on it. That was interesting. Even more perplexing, January 8th, I sent him a message, that I do not remember sending. It is a simple message, “LOL! It was 17 here with a wind chill in single digits. Crazy weather. Oh HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!‘ He then sent me a message back apparently and asked, “How are you guys doing?” I did not respond. I always respond to him. I do not know what was going on the 8th. Was I dissociated? Maybe I had a migraine and just do not remember. The 8th was his birthday, but I am pretty sure if the date had registered with me on the 8th, then I would have also remembered Grandmother’s death. That is the anniversary of her passing.

Today as I work on my lists, I want to do nothing more than climb in bed, and pull the covers up to my nose and tell the world, “You can’t see me.” I want to sleep. Sleep it all away, disappear under the covers, and hope to wake in a magical world. But lately my dreams aren’t magical, they bring nearly as much stress as being awake does. Nemesis from this world finding me in my dreams and preying on my innermost thoughts and struggles.

At the moment I am waiting for a callback from one item on my list. My attorney for my disability case. I suppose that I am anxious about that conversation, because I know that the last few times that I have talked in-depth about disability, an angry Little Shanna, and the other personality comes out. I am so tired that I do not know that I want to face that today, but any day will be the same.

Why not on Thursday…

Where’s My Snow?

I apologize for my absence the last couple of days.  We have had issues with our WIFI…again. 

Let’s catch up.  I went to see my therapist on Monday.  It was a good visit.  We talked quite a bit of about my past, and my personality of the past.  I told a few of my many adventures in life, when I was living.  Some memories made me laugh, others sigh and cry.  We discussed in depth what integration means.  

Since Little Shanna is learning to trust me our relationship, I have had a really hard time thinking about losing her.  Oddly it is like a child to me, and to an infertile woman, it is comforting.  It scares me to thinking of “killing her off”.  I never realized integration does not necessarily me getting rid of that alter.  She will become such a part of me that she’ll allow me to speak and act for both of us.  She will not be gone.

We also talked about the other personality that I feel.  I explained that she feels to be a teenager, but since I have not talked to her I do not know.  She seems very angry at the world.  I think Little Shanna is a stronger personality, and puts her in her place.  Kind of like a little child shall lead them.  

So that was therapy day. 

Yesterday I spent the day trying to get things ready for our winter storm.  I think they call it Leon.  I made a Taco Soup and browned some other meat for soft tacos. Oh yeah, we can’t forget the Apple Pie.   I tried to think of things that would be okay cold.  

Right now my tub as two 13 gallon trash cans full of water.  One for my babies, the other for flushing the toilet.  I made sure everything was good and charged up last night, because of the predicted power outages.

So far though, here in my little town.  Nothing.  I think maybe four or five pieces of frozen rain hit the window, but the second I noticed it stopped.  I was up about every hour and a half looking at the weather, and this childlike giddiness, I cannot blame the 5 year-old living inside my brain.  It is all me, but I am pretty sure she would enjoy the snow too.

The hubs was given 1/2 day yesterday all day today off.  My typing and searching the internet kept him awake this morning so here I sit.  Enos and I my eyes very heavy and my mind wandering.  I am so sleepy and took my pain meds for my head, that each time I open my eyes, the world spins and jumbles.  So most of this blog was written wit my eyes closed.  Now if that ain’t talent. (It is just when I doze and start dreaming that we have a problem.)

Image

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow

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Photo Credit: ak2.polyvoreimg.com

With childlike giddiness, I keep watching the weather reports. Snow is such a special treat here. We have a pretty good chance of it Tuesday night and Wednesday morning. I know like a child on Christmas Eve, I am not going to be able to sleep. I will be keeping a watchful eye out the window to see if I can catch a glimpse of the white fluffy stuff.

Of course, the worry wart in me is not far behind the giddiness. I worry to death about my hubs and other family and friends being on the road. There are many people who do not know how to drive in the snow, red Georgia clay yes, snow, not so much. My hubs has had experience in the snow, but the other prediction is the dreaded frozen rain. I do not look forward to that.

I remember the storm of 1993. That was insane. EVERYTHING was covered in ice. I was dating a soldier at the time, and they had a run down on the island. I hated him going by himself to that so I went with him. OH. MY. GOODNESS.

We had trees falling in front of the car, well a tree, and we were slipping and sliding all over the place. The most terrifying was driving over the Sydney Lanier Bridge.

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Photo Credit: Ameco-USA.com

You have seen the signs “Bridge Ices Before Road”, I can vouch. With the wind and the ice, his little beater of a Ford Escort, was pushed very close to the edge. I had my eyes closed praying, but you could hear and feel the impact on the car. My date said he was very glad I had my eyes closed, and even more glad that I was praying.

I cannot believe our soldiers had to run in it. I waited in the little Escort with near hurricane force winds was making the car shimmy. It was so cold too, so so cold. After the run we went and walked on the beach. Not the smartest thing. Did I mention it was COLD? Cold and that wind, felt like we were being sandblasted with ice and well, beach sand.

When we arrived back at my parents place, we found my home powerless. What a nightmare. My family and I went up to my Granny’s (now my home) because she had power. Sadly we forgot to take our Beta fish, Frog. Frog succumbed to the cold in our powerless home. He was such a good fish.

So here I type, I am putting my request in for Heavenly Father, and Mother Nature respectively, snow only please, and enough that it is pretty and a little fun, so not too much. I want some nice pictures of my furbabies playing in it.

Thanks for reading! ~Hope

My “anti-anxiety” food list

Thanks Hayley for sharing your Anti-Anxiety food list!

Calm Kitchen

So yesterday I said that I would be posting my list of foods that supposedly reduce anxiety. I made this list by reading various articles and websites about anxiety and healthy eating. I will be incorporating these foods into my diet as much as possible. So here is my list of the foods and why they may reduce anxiety.

  • Whole grain bread/pasta/rice: Contains serotonin which boosts your mood and relaxes your body
  • Oily fish: Contains Omega 3 which balances stress hormones
  • Avocados: Contains potassium and can lower blood pressure
  • Broccoli: Contains vitamin B and folic acid which is thought to relieve stress, anxiety and depression
  • Almonds: Contains selenium, magnesium, zinc and vitamin E which boost the immune system
  • Oranges/blueberries/strawberries and other fruit that contains vitamin C: Curbs stress hormone levels and boosts the immune system

I am putting together a meal plan so that I can try this out for…

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Who Was On The Computer Last Night?

My husband complains today about being sleepy. I mention to him that it is most likely because he snored and needs to replace his CPAP mask. He then said, “No I was referring to someone else staying up all night.”

I looked at him questioning. I told him that I slept all night for change, or I thought I did. He goes on to say that I kept him awake messing around on my laptop.

Why do I find this so disturbing? I went to sleep before him. I woke up to go to the bathroom and he was still awake. We joked, and I went back to sleep. I do not remember waking up until Daisy started barking at 5:00. I told her to go back to sleep and I did the same. She woke me up again at 6:00, and I went did the morning routine that my husband normally does with the dogs on the weekdays. Letting them out, feeding them, and watering them.

I then came to check my email. Looked up a few things, and wasn’t on the computer long before I was sleepy and turned it off.

I have no recollection of being on my computer during the middle of the night. I do not know who was or what they did. It really bothers me. I really do not like this.

Photo Credit; colormegreen.areavoices.com
Photo Credit; colormegreen.areavoices.com