Random Acts of "Kindness"

Posts tagged ‘Stress’

DENTIST

It should come as no surprise that I’m not a regular at the doctor’s or dentist’s office. Sadly I have been without a dentist for many years when my last one retired because of cancer. I didn’t have any problems with my teeth and didn’t look for a new one. Then while eating a hamburger, I thought a rock had been included in the meat. Actually, it was a filling. I had lost a portion of a tooth which made inhaling interesting. I didn’t even want to think about drinking or eating. Thankfully a friend had returned from Florida and shared the name of her dentist. Thankfully the dentist was able to fit me in that evening — remaining after closing time. After he fixed my tooth, I made another appointment. I figured I might need more work done and I knew my teeth would need cleaning.

I was right. I don’t know the last time my teeth were cleaned — how many years had passed. The hygienist used interesting equipment to take the x-rays, which showed that my teeth required more than a surface cleaning. I needed DEEP CLEANING. The top right side was cleaned that day and I made another appointment. She warned me that the bottom would be harder.

The day of the appointment my horoscope told me that “Its important to know that, for whatever reason, people notice you today.” The comics made me laugh. Dennis told a friend that his parents use the house phone to find their cell phone. I used ours for that purpose the day before. Garfield noticed that his owner didn’t know how to use the phone. Our friend had just commented that her brother didn’t answer the phone when his words weren’t working. (It reminded me of when my father had Alzheimer’s.) Marmaduke provide a laugh when he stole the leg bone from a dinosaur.

I arrived early at the dentist’s office and they were running late. A son had accompanied his aging parents. His father had a motorized cart and a walker. His mother was still receiving treatment. I found a current Times magazine for the Dad, and National Geographic’s for myself. The issue was dedicated to the Vikings. I was amazed when I learned that it had been discovered that men were not the only warriors. Woman’s bones had been discovered with high ranking weapons and gaming pieces. Indicating that they had played an important role in the conquests.

I used that information during the cleaning. I’m half Swedish and kept reminding myself that I’m woman and I’m strong. Most of it wasn’t too bad, except for the part that wasn’t numb, under the gum line. I still have one lower part to go.

I have straws in the house for our grandchildren. They came in very handy when anything I tried to drink didn’t make it into my mouth.

The next morning the bible reading made me laugh. Abraham popped up. I was reminded of God’s promise to him. Abraham pops up regularly in my life. Exactly what it means, I don’t know and haven’t tried to figure it out.

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BE NOT AFRAID

This is the title of a religious song that I first heard when I planned to publish the story of living with Pap’s Alzheimer’s disease. “Be not afraid, I go before you. Come follow Me.” I almost said that it was a new song, but my father passed over more than 20 years ago. He definitely isn’t gone, I’m reminded of my “friends in high places” regularly. Which in my life is a good thing.

I had a warning storms were coming into my life. THANKFULLY THEY ARE NOT HEALTH CONCERNS. I have the ability to turn a tiny bump into a mountain in the blink of an eye. When there is only one problem at a time, I have a better chance. When they pile up, it is harder for me to relax. Even if I have done my best to solve it, and am waiting for the results, they continue to surface like the bubbles in the boiling hot pools in Yellowstone.

Many of my warnings come from the bible. When I open to Job or the furnace in Daniel, I am aware that storms might be coming.The verse often hints at the severity of the problem. Am I proclaiming God’s strength in Job, or listing shortcomings. Have I pointed to the beginning of the furnace where there are three walking or to the ending where they have an angel with them and are praising God?

I won’t list the turmoil in our life right now, I’m sure you have enough of your own but thankfully God is in charge. I needed to tell our neighbor about an upcoming project. He is in Arizona and I didn’t have his phone number. Luckily I opened our curtains and saw his tenant outside. Not only did his tenant have the needed phone number, he will be able to unlock their gates when we have our tree trimmed.

Some of it is just little things — temperature and humidity levels in the hundreds that continues for days. Strong storms when we have a leak in our roof. A flash of lightning that looked like it hit our house. Thankfully that was just a reflected light. (We had a lightning strike hit our house when our children were young.) The car battery loose.

While the bible often alerts me, as well as my book Queen of Angels, they also remind me that God is in charge. “Who made the world a desert? ” Daniel 3:28. “The Lord goes forth like a hero.” Isaiah 42:13. “saying to the prisoners, come out.” Isaiah 49:9. Church is often in the mix: “Lord, on the day I called for help, you answered me.” Psalm 138

The key is to be aware of the interactions in my life. To keep my eyes wide open, the blinders off. To have courage — God is in charge.

I read something interesting last night. It was in the June 30 issue of Woman’s World. I often buy the magazine but don’t often read it cover to cover. Trying to get rid of some of the clutter on our table, I scanned quite a few of the magazines and found this. “Taming tension with red meat. Eating 16 oz of beef or pork weekly could help you feel less stressed in as little as five day. Red meat is rich in iron and all nine essential amino acids which together relax tense muscles. ”

After the birth of our four children, my request to my husband was for an Italian beef sandwich. I’m often looking for leftover beef in our fridge or getting a hamburger. Makes sense now.

The problems in our world make the problems in my life extremely small. OUR WORLD NEEDS OUR PRAYERS! Please join me! Years ago I read that a group of people joined in praying for the world during a crisis.

AGE

In the past, my age didn’t bother me. I actually had to stop and think — “How old am I?” when asked my age. Depending on the day I felt anywhere from 10 to 100. Sadly that time has passed for the time being. I’m feeling my age and I DON’T LIKE IT! I don’t know what specifically has caused that change in my attitude. Depression — possibly. Too much weight? The tornado? The damage to my shoulder — unable to exercise like I used to? It could be one of the above or all might be adding to the mix.

I used to be able to lift a box of water off of the display and put it in my grocery cart. They have increased the size of their package from 36 to 40 16 oz bottles. I don’t remember if I could lift the 36 but I know I can’t lift the 40. I wait for a stronger male to assist me if my husband isn’t with me. Recently a younger female asked if I wanted a case and easily picked it up and put it in my cart. I remembered when I could do that. Of course that was before I injured my shoulder. I’m grateful that my shoulder seems to be healing — I have more range of motion without pain but I still don’t have the strength back.

Reaching for stuff is becoming harder. I’m shrinking — an inch or two is gone. Stuff on the top shelf or at the back is next to impossible to reach. I look for a tall person. At home I use my grandchildren’s step or a ladder. I’m rearranging my shelves. The day will come in the not to far future when my grandchildren will be taller than me. Stretching exercises are NOT helping me to keep my height.

There are some things that I can do. I can lose weight. (Right now it loves me and doesn’t want to leave.) I can exercise more and strengthen my arms. I can concentrate on the positive things in my life and not spend as much time on the negative. Some things are impossible — I CANNOT REGAIN MY YOUTH OR MY HEIGHT.

I constantly meet people who are in their 90’s with good quality of life. That is my goal — not necessarily reaching 90 — God’s plan, not mine.

BATTERED

I’ve often thought of myself as a ship, sailing the open seas, at the mercy of the wind and the tides, directed by a Supreme Being. I have to confess that this ship feels battered. Since the beginning of summer, my life has been anything but smooth water. Thankfully nothing extremely serious, my family is well, we have shelter and food on the table BUT many, many strong waves have tried to drown me.

I thought I was coping well when the tornado struck. Thankfully we were at home, not in the path of destruction. I don’t try to remember stuff that surfaces that unsettles me. I have NOT taken photos of the damage caused by the storm, except on our own property. It is too sad to see the sunny roads that were once sheltered by trees. I don’t need to remember the effects of the strong winds. If I were to try to list all of the challenges and problems I would have to think, and write them down. I don’t need to remember them, you don’t need to read about them. I will admit that I was happy when June ended. I mistakenly thought that waters would be calmer, smooth sailing. I WAS WRONG. More rough seas ahead. More challenges, more obstacles — even our trip to Florida for our granddaughter’s wedding had huge waves.

Then thankfully came August — but NOT smooth seas. A favorite restaurant announced it was closing, as did the garage that works on our car. Health concerns for members of my husband’s family surfaced. Now I’m sure that “my friend’s in high places” have been busy — “helping.” I’m also sure that I didn’t write down the many times I received their help and said “thank you!”

I looked at the thought rambles that I’ve written and realized that nothing was scheduled to publish. I’ve been so busy trying to keep my head above water that I haven’t taken the time to write, to share. When I had so many ideas for thought rambles, I wondered if that meant my life would be busy. That I wouldn’t have time to write. I guess that is true. Day by day, week by week, month by month — time passes. I’ll leave the passing of time in the hands of the Supreme Being and keep trying to do the best I can!

PRESSURES OFF AGAIN

Who am I kidding? It sounds good — but it is a big, fat lie. Yesterday my weight was UP — by 3 pounds. I blamed it on sodium — too much salt in the pickles. I told myself not to worry, the little bit of salt wouldn’t hurt me and it would be gone soon. MY WEIGHT IS UP MORE TODAY. My feet were swollen last night, my face feels swollen today. I haven’t exercised in four days — okay, I’m still walking 9,000 — 10,000 steps every day. I just haven’t made time for the morning exercises and there is no time today.

A loud bang woke me at 4:00 am from a sound sleep — thunder overhead, followed by a downpour. Our skylight has another leak. Hopefully not only will we find the leak, but we will be able to fix it. Our car needs more work. The flappers in the dash are stuck, we are only able to get heat from the engine, no cooling from the air conditioner. My husband doesn’t do well with heat and I don’t do well with drafts.
Buying a new car is not something we can do right now.

Two doctor appointments are scheduled this week. Hopefully all will be well. Pressures off? REALLY?
Now I know that if I exercise, I will work off some of the stress. Deep breathes help too.

Vacation is on the horizon — I still have to pack. My husband is staying home — he will need food in the house to eat, so will Robin. We are planning to go to the camper when I return, I’m trying to gather stuff for there too. Originally, I thought my husband would go out to the camper while I was gone but plans changed. I didn’t have the time to stock the camper either.

I walked into the pantry and reminded myself that I accomplished NOTHING over the winter. It must be the day and the rain. Raining outside, raining inside too. I recently decided to try to stop the negative talk — not doing too well today. I can usually handle stuff when it comes one at a time, it is the deluge that gets me.

It is a good thing I have friends in high places that “help” me. I got hit on the head yesterday, and the freezer avalanched. I need to pay more attention. I always say that I make plans and God Laughs. Step by step, I’m trying. Just slid back quite a bit.

POST NOTE: Before leaving for the doctor’s office yesterday, I tried to save this ramble under the name PRESSURES OFF. I was asked if I wanted to replace the ramble that was already there. ?? NO, I DIDN’T but I did want to read what was on the ramble. It is funny how as much as time passes, things change but remain the same. It was about two years ago, same time of year, preparing for vacation — weight was up, feet were swollen, etc. Today — weight is DOWN, used a pressure cooker to cook beans for chili and DIDN’T blow up the kitchen.

YESTERDAY–my husband asked the doctor about a lump on his neck. I guess I was worried because I felt relieved when I learned it was nothing to worry about, just fatty tissue.

DRIVER’S SEAT AGAIN

Okay, I’ll admit it. I’m a WORRY WART. Years ago, I received a thought ramble — the subject was riding with God on a tandem bicycle. He was doing the driving, I was the passenger. Which sounds terrific and I TRY. I just DON’T ALWAYS SUCCEED. Especially right now.

We were driving home from the camper, stuck in the car for two hours with no place to escape. My husband asked a question about finances to which I had no answer. I did not have my records or a pencil and paper. I COULD NOT run the numbers to see how badly we were drowning. I tried desperately to put the question out of my mind. Evidently I didn’t succeed because I’m still stressed.

Three days in a row I have been told to pray: “Thy will be done through me, Thy will and not mine be done.” And I try. I’m reminded that I’m unique, I have a job to do that no one else does. And I’ll agree — but I still try to put my hands on the bike and drive. I’m reminded that I’m always safe and secure and free to be. I’m grateful — especially when my foot slips and I regain my footing and don’t do a head first fall down the stairs. I did say “thank you.” THANKFULLY I HAVE “FRIENDS IN HIGH PLACES” I definitely need their help — always but especially when I’m stressed.

I have tried tea. I have tried various vitamins. I have taken pencil to paper and realized there is no reason to panic. I’ll admit that I have various insect bites that are not helping. I’m sure the stuff I’m putting on them isn’t able to do the job since I’m so stressed. It doesn’t help that I don’t like the numbers on the scale. It doesn’t help that I’m overtired. It doesn’t help that I meet myself coming and going. Don’t I realize that I have AGED? I’m not willing to accept that fact. I have many friends who are in their eighties. I want to be like them — with energy.

At the camper — at the pool, I recognized a woman’s face but couldn’t place her. When I told her she looked familiar, and heard her story, I realized I knew her husband better. He recently passed at the age of 95. She is in mourning. I tried to share stories but she isn’t ready to hear them. Is she ready to notice that he is around to help if needed. Good question — no answer.

Just the other day, washing many loads of clothes when we returned home, all the hangers fell down to the floor. While picking them up — I noticed the treat I left for unwelcome visitors in our basement was empty. Time to put down a new one. And I said ” thank you” instead of grumbling about the hangers all over the floor. I’m very thankful for the help I get from my friends in high places.

Do you notice yours?

REFRESHING SPIRIT

It has been a long winter. Too many days of snow, cold temperatures, gray skies. As I write this, the country to our north is still getting SNOW — 9 inches. I’m sorry it is them, GLAD that it isn’t us. So now supposedly it is spring. Oh No — coldest spring in ____ years. We just had a week of rain, gray skies, cooler temperatures. To make matters worse, my husband’s cough required a trip to the doctor, which led to an EKG, than an appointment with a heart doctor — scheduled stress tests. First test he couldn’t breathe and we needed to reschedule.

STRESSED — I guess so. He passed his next stress test with flying colors. Afterward he suggested I take the rest of the day off — enjoy the warm ( 88*) day, blue skies, — visit the Botanical Garden. I didn’t argue.

Daffodils were still in bloom — tulips too. In fact, the Garden had planted 26,000 tulips to bloom for Mother’s day. The cold spring didn’t stop their flowering. The crab apple trees are forming buds, no flowers yet. As I wandered the garden, camera at the ready — I wondered what photo would capture the day. Would it be the single swan swimming in the lake? I wondered where it’s mate was. Then I heard young voices from the fountain in the rose garden. Two girls, shoes off, were enjoying the water.

I wandered from garden to garden — many flowers showed the effects of the weather, many flowers stood tall, showing off their blooms. Birds — many voices — many species sang their songs. Reminded me of ourselves — struggling through the challenging weather — doing the best we could. I passed many family groups — some with toddlers in strollers, some with handicapped people in wheelchairs, some elder couples — hand in hand — all enjoying a brief respite.

I stopped by the bubbling waterfall — listened to the water music, rested my eyes, when I opened them, I saw a flying bird with a large wing span. I recognized a blue heron and changed my path to discover its spot on the shore. My camera took a photo as the bird dived into the water for a fish — I just captured an outstretched wing.

I didn’t have the length of time to wander the Garden at my leisure. I wanted to be on the road before heavy rush hour traffic. That being said, I visited my favorite spots, took photo’s in passing and headed for the exit. A toddler, shoes off, dipped her feet in a fountain. The pair of swans swam under the bridge as I left — closing with the sights and sounds as the day began.

Wandering with SPIRIT is ALWAYS an adventure. This time the Garden was REFRESHING as well.

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