Open letter to my daughter for her 14th Birthday…

My dear girl,

I don’t even know where to begin. If I could cover time in molasses and slow it down so you would be with me longer I would.

Yet…

Every day you become more responsible. You help without being asked, you do your work without being asked. You clean your room without being asked. I no longer have to tell you to shower or ask you to change into clean clothes.

And yet…

You want to be with your friends all the time and we miss you. Your brother would bury himself in your hugs for days if you would let him. I would do the same. Perhaps we grasp harder these days because we feel you slipping away.

And yet…

You are learning what interests you, thinking about the future, and becoming this incredibly funny and intelligent young woman I love to talk to. Your sense of humor is sharp and witty, your taste in music is great, and the fact that you steal my clothes sometimes is flattering.

Yet…

Where is my fuzzy duck haired little baby girl!? Where did the time go? Just yesterday you needed help walking, and last night you still couldn’t tie your shoes and early this morning you were nervous about walking to the store by yourself. How is it that by the time I left for work today you were so grown up?

Time plays mean tricks on us parents. While we are in the middle of your childhood we work so hard we forget how fleeting it is. If we are lucky we will remember to cherish that time with you while we are in it. I am one of the lucky ones. I grabbed tight to your childhood whenever I could yet even though I cherished it, you still grew up too quickly.

Now you are entering high school. You wander about on your own, seeing people I don’t know well, having adventures without me. While I am excited to meet the young woman you are ever becoming I still wish you needed me to help dress your doll, or help fix your light saber, or hold you because the movie we watched was too scary. I fear the things you will need me for in the future as much I long to still be needed.

I love you my dearest girl.

Happy Birthday.

We’ve been buzzing around…

It’s been a few days. I suppose the fact that I announced, out loud, my intention to write every day can be tied directly to my not doing so. I’m funny that way.

We’ve been busy little bees over here, both us and the bees themselves. We’ve decided to name them the Bee Team and every morning Oliver and I have gone out to sit and watch them fly around.

I picked up a gorgeous iron garden bench/glider to sit on and we rearranged the pots with our most fragrant plants in them so when we are sitting there in the cool morning breeze mint, oregano, rosemary, and other delightful scents waft before our noses while we watch the bees sip water from the fountain and gather pollen from the flowers. I love it.

The storms have been trying their best to crush my head again but with the garden in place I seem to handle it better. I no longer feel as sorry for myself. Instead, I just go lie in the hammock, read a book, and listen to bees until I feel better.

I am going to take some close up pics of our industrious new family members soon, so keep an eye out!

The bees knees…

We are getting bees!!

It started like this:

Mom and I were driving home the other day when she asked me if that man in our alley was wearing a hazmat suit. I peered beyond her and declared it was a beekeeper!!

We immediately halted the car, rolled down the windows, and fairly mobbed him with questions. He is an Urban Farmer and beekeeper. He has a hive a few doors down from us and soon will put one in our yard!

He does all the maintenance and beekeeping while we get honey and bees!! My plants will have more bees and I can finally feel like I’m doing more for the vanishing bee population than just planting flowers.

Best of all my kids will get as-local-as-you-can-get honey for their allergies and they will get to learn about co-existing with these amazing time creatures that do so much for our food supply.

Oliver and I have already been setting out water for the neighborhood bees and we sit in the garden and watch them line up to drink. Their tiny furry bodies rest on the edge of the water pool as they delicately sip. Yum. He is super excited to have a hive of our own and has been telling me all about how to stay still when they land on you so they don’t feel threatened.

I plan to put up a page on the hive’s progress so keep your eyes out!

Update:

They are here!!

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The Sooky Foo Honey Company brought our lovely little hive early this afternoon!

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It’s so wonderful to see them out in the garden. Many of our neighbors have stopped by to see them and the dog has already been checking them out.

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Squee!! We have bees!

Misery loves company…

I met another migraine sufferer last night and he and I spent a few hours discussing various symptoms, treatments, and attitudes about migraines.

It was wonderful.

It puts me in an odd place to feel happiness at learning someone else is going through this. I recognize it’s not that I would wish this on anyone so much as it is having the opportunity to discuss my situation with someone who truly understands it. Talking triptans and DHE derivatives and triggers with anyone who doesn’t have migraines doesn’t seem like a good plan.

Truthfully, discussing migraines with people who don’t have migraines isn’t usually a good plan. I either get the infamous “Have you tried…” or I get “Wow. How do you do it? I couldn’t do that.” The former is something I sit through because everyone means well and is trying to help. The latter just makes me feel badly. I’m no superhero. I do it because the other option is to die.

I don’t want to die.

So having a discussion with another person who understands aura and triggers and the crazy side effects of all the weird medications they try on you is awesome, even though a part of me feels like a bad person for celebrating that another person has this too!

It just goes to show you that misery truly does love company. It’s so nice to find another person who feels your pain.

Insane in the dream brain…

braincomic

Last night I had a dream that I began drawing a comic strip about my brain.

Unfortunately, my dream self is a much better artist than my actual self.

In my dream comic, a brain on legs with funky little eyeballs was doing random things to me throughout the day such as;

1. Turning to me while I am driving and shooting a camera flash off repeatedly.

2. Tightening a vise around my head while I am drinking my coffee, then looking at me and rudely saying “What?!”

3. Playing jump rope on my skull while I am trying to sleep.

4. Poking sharp points into my temples every few minutes and then pretending he didn’t do it.

(Hmmm… not sure why my brain is depicted in my dreams as he…)

I cannot decide what the dream means. Was it just a nightmare with a visual manifestation of my migraines or is my subconscious telling me to quit law and go to art school so I can better express, through comic art, the problems faced by migraine patients around the world?

Do You Want to Know the Secret, Too?

Misty Ewegen:

This is a lovely piece about the moments that send a marriage toward divorce. In fact, this author’s whole blog is amazing.

Originally posted on Must Be This Tall To Ride:

Woman whispering in man's ear --- Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis

Everyone wants to know the secret.

But it seems like no one knows it, and if they do, no one’s telling.

The question haunts me now. Because people keep asking and I never know what to say.

“What could she have done?”

I never knew enough to ask that question during my marriage. In the beginning, I was too immature and oblivious. I figured marrying my girlfriend just meant things would always stay the same, and we were both simply agreeing to stay together, forever. Like forever boyfriend and girlfriend.

When you’re young, people tell you marriage is hard. That you really have to work and communicate and forgive.

But when you’re listening to it, you politely nod your head, but think to yourself: These well-meaning people don’t know anything about us. We love each other and are totally committed. They don’t see how we are together when…

View original 1,095 more words

The Bell Jar…

BellJarMigraineSylvia Plath wrote “How did I know that someday―at college, in Europe, somewhere, anywhere―the bell jar, with its stifling distortions, wouldn’t descend again?”

I understand exactly how she felt.

The doctors don’t know what causes my headaches. I spent 12 days in the best hospital in the nation for headache treatment and we are no closer to knowing why I get them. Is it hormones? Stress? Food? Nighttime teeth clenching? Pressure changes? All of the above?

I lost four months to my headaches when they were at their worst. Four months of not working, not going much of anywhere. Four months of distance in friend groups and business relationships. Four months of earning no income, not volunteering, and generally not being me.

Now I am better, kind of. I am back to work a few hours a week. I am up to camping for a few days at a time and able to table an event here and there. I can contribute. However, I walk around on tenterhooks, uncertain whether or not I am going to be able to continue this pace or if I will suddenly turn bad enough to have to stop working for four months and spend another 2 weeks in the hospital. I live under the possibility that one day my own bell jar will descend again.

I don’t drive much precisely because I never know if, once I have gotten somewhere, I will feel well enough to drive back. Will I get to a restaurant to meet a friend only to have to send someone for my car in the morning because my headache upped it’s game and rendered driving impossible or will I be able to be out for two hours without any negative consequences?

This past week is a perfect example. I felt great. I gardened, I cleaned, I cooked. I spent time with the kids. Then the 4th of July hit. Suddenly I had to cancel my original plans and find another way to celebrate. I took medication and saw the doctor and this morning it was a little better. Then this afternoon it got worse. I spent the rest of the day generally in bed resting waiting for it to calm the hell down.

Three not so great headache days in a row and I am facing the fear that I will fall back into that hellish place I awoke to in January.

I have lowered my work load and pruned my volunteer efforts. I chose two organizations to stay working with and dropped everything else. I can handle a couple days of work a week. I have to try to succeed at this. If I give up and just wait for the problem to go away I will spend forever waiting.

I take my medication and see my doctors. I eat right and exercise. I sleep. I have built in rest periods in my week to replenish my energy levels. I am doing what I can to make this work.

I just wish there was a way to do it without having that bell jar hanging over my head.

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