Saturday, February 28, 2015

Monday Morning in Miami

It says something about the Cowboy and me, I think, that after 32 years of marriage we can spend 14 days continuously together and still like each other at the end of it.

On the last morning of our cruise vacation I arrived out on the deck with my buffet breakfast in hand. The Cowboy was already seated at an umbrella'd table for 4. I started to set my plate down when he gestured to the seat on his other side.

"No, no," he said, "I saved this seat for you.  It's a nicer view."

So I enjoyed my breakfast facing the gorgeous view of downtown Miami Harbour in the early morning, while he looked out on the working side of a harbour - industrial buildings, cranes, and container ships.

Putting the other's interests ahead of your own, that's true love.  But, actually paying attention to what those interests might be in the first place ... that's captivating.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Looking into Sky

This post was first published on a writers' blog to which I contribute. We were asked to answer the question - Do you have a regular system for becoming recharged for your writing?  This was my answer.

I don’t have a "regular system" for becoming recharged for writing.  I think I need to get a regular system for writing before I get a regular system for becoming recharged for writing. 

But I do know what recharges me and sparks my creativity.  

We moved to the big city almost 8 years ago.  Before that we lived in the country.  All I had to do was look out any window to be recharged.  A short walk to the burning barrel refreshed me because I was outside, listening to the trees whisper and the horses run home.  Deep breaths came easy then.

More than anything, what refreshes me is the sky.  Wide blue sea or swollen clouds, heavy grey snow sky, wind whipped mare’s tails, or starry expanse, the ever changing sky is my inspiration.  Always.

In the country I could see the sky from any window in my house.  Then we moved to the city where I had to walk to the middle of my cul-de-sac to see the sky.  But one day, when we were in the midst of a 3-year-long family crisis and my writing had taken a back seat, I did that. 

I don’t know exactly how it happened but, as I stood there smack dab in the centre of the cul-de-sac, breathing deeply and looking up into the sky, inspiration came.  She just showed up, like a child approaching with a smile.  I welcomed her and she started to tell me her story, and then I went into the house and wrote down her story. Word for word - the first chapter of my novel.

The sky does that for me, and it never disappoints. 

Sunday, February 15, 2015

You Don't Know What You've Got Til it's Gone

I'm a people watcher.

Lately, when I watch people, I am drawn to the way they walk.

For two years now my own walking has been hampered. I am forced to think about how I walk every single day. Tasks I need to accomplish are organized by how many steps it will take to complete them. So, when I people watch now I watch how they walk.

Here is what I observe:

Most walking people pay no attention to walking. It doesn't even cross their minds how they are
going to get from A to B. They just go. And I used to be just like them.

Which brings me to the question:
How many other seemingly involuntary functions does my body perform daily, hourly, secondly, that I take completely for granted?

Hearing? Sight? My beating heart? My texting thumb? The fact that I can breathe?

These are no small things.

I will praise You because I have been remarkably and wonderfully made. Your works are wonderful, and I know this very well.
-- Psalm 139:14

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Dental Monologue

Remember Pollyanna?

I found myself thinking about her the other day as I sat in The Dentist's Chair for my annual check-up and cleaning. Eyes closed, willing myself to unclench my vigorously entwined fingers from each other, I thought,

I'm getting to be more of a chicken, the older I get. Pollyanna had that glad game. She played it whenever things looked bad ... I guess I can be glad it's just a cleaning and not a root canal. And, once this is done it'll be 9 more months before I have to come ba ... YOUCH! 

I grimace as my head twitches.

Dental Hygienist:  "Oh was that a little sensitive?  I'll come back to it without the pic later."

I'm glad she is keen to these little nuances of pain indicators. I wonder if they are taught to watch for these things in dental hygienist school. Like, does she notice my hands clenched so tightly together that my knuckles are white? Okay, relax ... untwine those fingers ... rest them comfortably in my lap ...

I open my eyes to see the television screen in the ceiling above me. It is black, except for the words floating across the screen - "Musical information not available".

There's music playing? Oh yeah. I remember it was when I first sat down and she asked if I wanted the remote. I said no. Why would I say no? At least watching some mute talk show would take the edge off the sound of that drill-like water pic high intensity cleaning tool that is right now getting dangerously close to the sensitive spot right behind my bottom front teeth!!

I feel my fingers clench together again. Then I breathe. Unclench. Adjust the dark glasses she put on me before she began the torture ... excuse me ... the cleaning.

Used to be we never had to wear these glasses. Are the tools so all powerful now that there's a danger of putting my eye out with the flying shards of ... what? What could possibly be flying out of my mouth?

I look up at her as she concentrates on her task.

Hmmm, blue eyes. I wonder what HER teeth look like. I'll have to remember to look when she takes off that mask. I don't think I'd ever be able to identify her on the street though if I only had to go by the eyes. Interesting how much difference a whole face makes. I'm glad for whole faces to look at. 

She is finished with the pics and tells me she is going to polish. Do I want mint or bubblegum flavour? For a second I wonder if I should go out on a limb, be unpredictable. But in the end I choose mint. Again.

I'm glad for mint flavour. I don't think I could handle that bubblegum aftertaste for the rest of the day.

The doctor pops in for my check-up. He's not my regular dentist.

"Hello," he says, "I'm Dr. P_____ .  Dr. G_____ is not here today. I'm sure you have noticed the difference. I'm younger and taller and of a different ethnicity."

"And you have more hair," I say.

He smiles and snaps on his latex gloves. Starts inspecting my teeth while quietly mumbling dental-type words and numbers to the hygienist. She marks things down on a chart.

I hope he doesn't tell me it's time to replace that last filling. I can't take another 6 months of pain, and chewing on only one side. It's just plain annoying.

Dr. P____ leans back and lowers his mask. Takes off his gloves.

"Everything looks good. Eventually we will replace that filling, but it's not urgent."

"Great," I say, "Thanks."

The Hygienist asks what colour of toothbrush I want.

"Do you have pink?"

No pink.  I take purple instead.

I'm glad for purple and pink.  Such happy colours.

She escorts me to the front desk.

As I put on my coat, I glance out the window at the sunny sky.

I'm glad that's over.  What a great day!

  photo credit: <a href="">Sappymoosetree</a> via <a href="">photopin</a> <a href="">cc</a>

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Transition - Reboot, Part 3

It has been over a week since we finished our Reboot towards better health - 10 days of replacing all meals and snacks with juiced vegetables and fruit.  I promised Bobbi, one of the commenters to my blog, that I would post about how the transition from Reboot to regular eating has gone.

                                                                (Photo credit below)

For me, the hardest part of the Reboot was the Transition.  To be honest, although I knew I'd have to take it easy for a short time as far as what I ate, I didn't expect it to be as hard as it was.  My body did not take kindly to getting back to 'normal'.  It liked getting all of those micronutrients every day.

The first day back to regular eating was okay.  I had part of an egg and some toast for breakfast, juice for lunch, and a small supper - baked chicken breast, noodles & veggies. On the second day, I headed to bed at 4 pm and didn't resurface until 10 am the next day.  My stomach was queasy and I was a bit dizzy.  I had started the day with a fruit smoothie and an egg.  Juice for lunch again.  Could have been the chocolate wafers I tried in the afternoon that put me over the edge ... or maybe the cheese.  Remember I craved cheese during my reboot? But maybe I just needed the extra rest.  Because of the boost of energy I'd had during the 10 day reboot I had kept very busy.  So maybe I really needed rest.  After 10 am the next day I was fine.  Babe & The Cowboy didn't seem to have a problem at all with the transition other than a little queasiness.

True to our resolve, The Cowboy and I are replacing one meal a day with a juice, at least 5 times a week.  We are also continuing to start the day with a cup of hot water and lemon before breakfast.  That seems to get things moving first thing in the day.  The Cowboy drinks hot water and lemon throughout the day in place of coffee.

I forgot to mention in my Reboot posts that we usually ended the day with an herbal tea. I've never been much of a coffee OR tea drinker but I do like my licorice spice herbal tea.  So I'm still continuing to end the day with tea when I can.

The Cowboy can't believe he had nothing but juice for 10 days - that he kept with it for a whole 10 days.  And most people who know him can't believe it either.  I think we did so well because we did it together.  Nobody else in the house was eating regular food, and I didn't have to think about cooking meals for someone else either.

It is recommended that during the reboot you stop taking any vitamins or medication that is not prescription. (Continue taking prescription medicines)  I have always been a big vitamin-taker but I adhered to the recommendation and stopped the vitamins during our 10 days, and I felt very healthy.  After the reboot I decided to not go back on vitamins for a week to see if there was any difference.  There was.  I was more tired, and foggier in the brain. So this week I will go back to vitamins again.

For those of you who are interested in trying a reboot, I've posted some links below.  It's definitely worth checking out.  If nothing else, watch the movie Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead 2, and see what you think about a reboot after watching.  

Check out the Trailer for Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead 2  here

Here is where you can "meet" Joe Cross and find out all about a reboot:      Reboot with Joe

The exact plan we followed was this one.  It's a 5-Day plan that we did twice.

And that's about all for this post.  Please comment below and let me know how your reboot goes.

photo credit: <a href="">[Rossco]:[]</a> via <a href="">photopin</a> <a href="">cc</a>