Friday, March 20, 2009
As I Was Saying.......
A special blogging friend just reminded me I am overdue in posting, and she's right. It's been almost two weeks since I was here, but I can explain, honest.

That surgery I was determined to not keep bringing up to you, was done almost two months ago, and these last weeks, it's feeling like a challenge that's growing, so instead of going on about it, I just quietly retreated, at least from blogging.

I worked hard at developing a plan to avoid that very thing. Besides stocking TV dinners, and doing Physical Therapy exercises, drinking fluids and taking vitamins daily, I intended to live in comfy p.j's, and read so many books, Barne's and Nobel might need to make home delivery for me.

There was a short distraction, while getting rid of those invading skunks, and I am grateful peaceful sleep is allowed once again, with their nocturnal antics finaly done. But getting through this post surgical stuff is taking more than I thought it would, to get me back to whatever normal is again.

I tell myself I'm doing fine with ignoring housecleaning, but I don't think I am. While I've never been fanatical about polishing the floors, and could ignore vacuuming carpets forever, the knowing that you can't, calls for more patience and resolve.

But I'm not giving up. I do understand why the physical therapy is so needed. But there are times when the PT person tells me "Give me fifteen of what I just did, like it's so easy, I can't decide whether to get mad, or cry.

Getting to drive again felt like losing training wheels. When I feel the walls are closing in, I just dress casual, and head out, sometimes almost looking for a kind hearted face. Once in a while a total stranger, noticing my crutch, will hold a door, or ask if I need help.

A few days ago I needed to pay some car insurance. The lady at its office is so likeable and nice, so instead of mailing the payment, I decided to go by. She wasn't terribly busy, so we talked a while, and when I needed to leave, she helped me get through the door. With a friendly smile, and a little gleam in her eyes, she paused a moment, and said: "There's a very nice man, who gets his insurance here." "He's retired, and a little overweight". She mentions, as she points to her belly. I'm wondering why she's telling me about him. "He's a nice guy.' "His wife died some years ago." "He'd probably love having someone to go places with". "I think he enjoys live plays." I'm still on the opening statement of all this, but starting to understand. My car insurance lady wants the two of us to meet.

I don't say "You are kidding, right?" But that's what I'm thinking. While this post operative misery continues, I am also getting a tooth recrowned, so one is missing right now. and my glasses look just awful. I need to take time to get new ones, but don't want to bother right now. My house is a mess. and the yard is even worse, and i can't do much of it.

Getting dressed halfway nice, to go anywhere other than physical therapy and doctors' appointments, sounds more trouble than it's worth. It's been so long since I colored my hair, even I think I look older. Not only all that, I distinctly remember, after trying several eligible guys, giving up on finding a good man.

But for a swift and silly moment, I started wondering if this highly recommended one has a Faith of his own, and please don't tell me he's a smoker, for I couldn't deal with that. Then I
come back to my senses, and decide that Spring Fever is not what I should be dealing with
now. Even getting over surgery is easier than that.

  posted at 11:01 PM  

Tuesday, March 10, 2009
This Thing Called Healing.
By now you must be weary of stinky skunk stories, and surgical details, but I'm still trying to figure this out, so please bear with me as I look at some parts of it again.

Who would have thought a skunk would have anything to do with a sweet smelling flower. but it kind of does, and it requires some serious thought about this knee condition. When you've needed better understanding about a troublesome situation, have you tired of logic, since that isn't working; and played a mental game with yourself I call "what iffing"? What if something hadn't changed, what if life as you knew it just kept going, and you kept doing the same old things. Things like working at a job you'd done so long, it becomes automatic.

Perhaps that is why when God wants our attention, He uses unusual things, like a pretty flower, (Electron hybrid Tea roses) and those awful smelling mammals we call skunks. If I hadn't tried planting the rose bush, I probably wouldn't have injured the knee, but more importantly, I would have kept on putting miles on it, on the halls of my nursing home job.

Spring forward a little, and here I am, with free time you'd think would be heavenly. But as a creature of our habits, I'm not accustomed to to THIS much time off, and the skunks didn't make it any better.

You wouldn't believe how many nights, as the evenings darkened, I dreaded night fall. I tried leaving certain lights on, and made sure my bed covers fit over my head. Playing music only seemed to aggravate the critters. I about wore out the window curtains, pulling them back, to see if anything was caught in the traps.

I can't tell you how happy I was when my son improved the catching process, and two of those big ugly things were carried off to wherever they take captured skunks.

Still, I wrestled with what to do with this healing time. A tremendous help in all of this, was my friend who came here with her son and his family, who is our new church pastor. Another important lesson was learned from her caring. I had formed the habit of not being with people nearly as much as I should, and determined to change that.

My first effort about it was to start going to Wednesday evening training programs. and just like so much of what God does for us, a new series started the first night I was there. It's about becoming more intimate with our Lord. The text we're using is written by Dr. Charles F. Stanley, a pastor of a Baptist church in Atlanta, Georgia. The title of his book is "In Step With God". I believe I've seen this pastor giving sermons on TV, and right away noted how sensible he always spoke, and I cannot recall one time his asking for money, or selling trinkets. Not that we shouldn't support whatever we care to. I just think if you're good at what you're doing, it will show.

The first night I went to the "In Step With God" program, I felt a little out of place, because almost everyone there was younger than me. The pastor had us pair off so we could learn more about each other, and the only one without a partner was a young woman who just happened to be black. I remember thinking, this is just right, for my hometown in Southeast Texas, is nationally known for its bigotry, something I'm far from proud of. This young black lady whose been coming to this church for years, forever is safe paired off with me. See. God knows exactly where to put us. It's just that we need to be willing to go there.

Other things I'm enjoying while off all this time are books. Several. One I just finished called "FINDING HOME" by a man named James Daniel Daly, brought teardrops mixed with occasional smiles; Sometimes made me laugh. Early in the book James Daniel writes about being terribly let down, when his father promises to bring him a leather baseball glove, but never does.

In another part of the book he writes about riding a bus somewhere to be with his Dad, but is heartbroken when the Dad doesn't ask him to live with him. That part of the book reminded me of my own bus trip from Houston to my hometown, to be with my father, and how unwelcome I felt, when it was obvious he wasn't happy for me to be in his life. Today I can disect it happening, and even be a little objective about how it was. But back then, I buried my feelings down deep, and looked for someone else to love me.

The book is described as "an imperfect path to faith and family". The "Focus on the Family" organization learned about Mr. Daly, and hired him to work with them, and over time he became part of their management. His biggest struggle there was that because he didn't have a nurturing childhood, how could he help others who also didn't. But thank god he got this straight in his head, that his own unbelievable childhood and growing up, and God directing it, gave him everything he could possibly need, to help others with. His process of getting to know our Lord could fill another book all by itself. God just kept putting exactly the right people into his life, when he needed them.

Yesterday I discovered another book I'm starting. It's obvious they are almost always serious writings. This one, "THE JESUS I NEVER KNEW", 1995, featuring an excerpt from "THE BIBLE JESUS READ". is by Philip Yancey. The book cover says it was voted Best Book Of The Year, and that "Philip Yancey helps reveal what two thousand years of history covered up". Billy Graham endorses it with: "There is no writer in the evangelical world that I admire and appreciate more".

I think I am in for some wonderful historical reading, with the main character being our Lord. One thing's for sure. It must be more interesting and life guiding, than fighting with smelly animals, or worrying about knee pain. So far, it's been five restful nights of not having to deal with skunks, but if I do, my son will help me. I haven't felt so freed in years. It's not that I've figured out what to do when I grow up yet, or how to manage when I get old. I am trusting God to send me work that is better than what I've done for years. I need to stop working my knees to their bones, (except maybe in physical therapy). I hope something I've written here helps you live your life better. I am working on mine, beginning now.

  posted at 2:33 PM  

Thursday, March 05, 2009
My Son, The Hero, and "Skunk Stinging"
A while back, my pastor, who's retired Airforce, to make a point in one of his sermons, pointed out that the first thing the military does to prepare for battle, is take out the enemy's supply lines. That may be what my son had in mind when he found a different way to deal with our skunk problem. A gaping hole at the bottom of the siding on the house marked the coming and going of those cowardly chacters, the ones with the long white lines down their backs.

After trying for some time to catch them, and netting only one, my son decided to improve the odds. He built a wooden tunnel that can be articulated, that connected to the house on one end, and led directly into the well baited "Mr. Bug Man's" animal trap.

After days of wondering if sleep would ever be allowed again, this morning I tumbled out of bed, and immediately checked the trap, and there's a black critter with those tell tale white markings on its back, in there, just waiting for The Bug Man to come and collect. To make sure no more of them are trying to homestead here, we'll be setting more traps, and seeing what we get, as they go through the part my son built, and right into the waiting trap.

Even when this son was a little kid, I recognized his astute ability to create and build things, but I never thought it would be something to bring about a Skunk Sting. Before my hero son dismantles all this, perhaps he should check on insuring his rights to it. I can see huge numbers of animal control companies calling, ordering his Red Carpet "Skunk Sting" easily articulated tunnels.

  posted at 10:25 PM  

Sunday, March 01, 2009
One Step Forward, And Two Steps Back
Sunday morning, it started so nice. Right up there with making coffee, and hurrying to the bathroom, I carefully pulled the curtain back, and stared at the trap door of the cage, that clearly was sprung. Because it was covered with a big black bag, to hide it I suppose, I couldn't tell what we had caught. But I got happy anyway, because it surely was something, and hopefully another skunk.

I felt better anyway, because I had got a good night's sleep, or most of it, after the critters got quiet. It was nice to be able to drive myself to church. I looked forward to seeing people I hadn't in weeks. I gathered good stuff I was taking to the monthly pot luck and was on my way. My son was probably sleeping in, so I would tell him about something being trapped later.

Singing and music is a big part of our worship service. When it comes to keeping the beat and siging out loud, we are all about that, and today it was great. People were glad to see me, and helpful as they could be with my getting around.

Our sermon was about how important it is that we pray for all kinds of situations and needs. Pastor emphasized we should not negate our prayers, no matter how small nor insignificant we might think they are. He used examples of faithful men's simple prayers that resulted in changes that have benefitted mankind through the ages.

Many young families are at our church. Children abound around there. I am one of the few older people. We make a good mix. Even the music is used accordingly, with lots of the younger kind, and old songs mixed in. It's a pretty good down home church. This is especially seen at our pot luck meals. After it my pace was fairly set for the rest of the day. I came home and didn't do much of anything, except get my son to check what's in the trap, and that's when I was so glad I went to church today. Was with others. For a while didn't think about stinky critters, or their erie sounds or how disappointed I was that the neighbor's cat was the only thing caught in the trap.

I suppose at this point I should remember last night's prayer that God grant me peaceful sleep, even if critters are around, and that all our prayers are important to Him, and we will see what tomorrow brings.

  posted at 7:07 PM  

About Me
Name: Judith

Location: Colorado

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