Underwhelmed?

Underwhelmed… I’m up but I’m not feeling it today. I have a list of things I need to accomplish but I don’t want to do any of them. I want to go back to sleep but I’m not tired. I even went back to bed and put a pillow over my head; didn’t work. It’s a fine hour to be awake, not even early at almost 8. I did get up, and I decided to come and sit and write. I’m sipping on my coffee and hopefully that will help.

Things on my list today include: running to the post office, studying, working on my business, making a call to insurance for my son, going to the park with a girlfriend, and selling a dog igloo. I don’t go back on rotation until next week.

Things I ought to consider working on: my bees (they need winterizing), my house needs cleaning, my lawn needs mowing, my bed needs changing. I ought to think of cooking and showering and calling the internet guys. Sweeping would be useful as well.

What I really want? This is the problem… not a problem, but at a standstill momentarily… I want to go sailing. I want to go up and get my boat (yes I’m buying it!) and sail it down. I want to feel the breeze in my hair (even if it is short), listen to the waves, watch the sails, and just feel the peace which comes when I’m on the ocean waters. I want to smell the salty scents of the water and feel the spray from the splashes. I want to stand proud and calm, knowing that I am living a life that I love and knowing that when I do so I give others permission to do so as well. That’s what I want.

I want to be done with my school so I can move forward with my consulting. I want to help others be healthy and help them to take control of their lives. I want to be able to jump-start their lives, their dreams, so they can begin to live again. That’s what I want too. I want others to see their own spark and to help them to grow it into a burning flame, a raging fire. I want others to see their worth and know that a life they love is possible.

Am I asking too much? Nope. Not at all. I’m likely not asking enough. This is a great big amazing world we live in. Anything we dream is possible. If you can think it, it can happen. What do you want?

thanks for reading,

me

 

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A Day in Little Washington

The littles and I spent a day in Washington, NC a couple of days ago. We got up early, ate breakfast, packed a couple of snacks and jumped into the car. About two hours later we arrived at the waterfront in Little Washington. First we bought hotdogs at Bill’s Hotdogs. Excellent dogs for a good price, I highly recommend it! Then we walked to the waterfront and sat down at a table and ate them. While we were sitting there a lovely four-year old girl with tight black curls and cute little bows sits with us and just smiles. Her smile is like sunshine and I think how wonderful it is that she can just be a child for a time.

There were some folks fishing from the floating dock. I decided to take the kids down there to see and feel the sea a little better. I ask them if they’ve caught anything yet. “Only a few little ones,” they say. Still, a few little ones is better than none and I’m happy for them. The dock is pretty cool, it goes up and down with the tides and the ramp adjusts from the shore. It was peaceful, relaxing, standing there for a few minutes.

Whenever I go to Washington, I have a sense of peace come over me. I find my steps slow along with my heart rate and I just want to take in the beauty of the place. I love the feeling of the breeze on my face and the sounds of the waves splashing along the sides of the boardwalk. My kids race ahead of me some and I continue to walk quietly. I stop to say hi to a boater, a live aboard like I want to be. We talk some of his boat and how he likes living there. He thanks me for saying hello, talks about how he moves his boat to different places and how if he wants to go to the gulf side he has it shipped for him over land. There’s something for me to learn from everyone I speak to.

Further down the boardwalk we gaze at all of the beautiful boats and start to pick and choose which kind we would like. We’re window shopping right now. There are a few on the hook in the river with dingys to come to shore. No sails are up right now and I wonder if the wind is too strong today or if it’s just because it’s a Monday and that’s the way things are. Most owners are either inside of their boats or at work somewhere. It’s an interesting feeling. I yearn for my chance to live like these and yet I am not jealous nor envious, I only see the possibility and am beginning to understand that there’s really no reason I cannot do the same. I look forward to that day more and more.

As we walk we approach the estuary portion that has been protected. The children lean over the rails watching for signs of turtles. Spitting in the water they wait and watch. I taught them a long time ago that it’s not proper to feed them but it’d be OK to spit and have them come and so the two of them are busily trying to hack up some spit to ‘feed’ the turtles. It’s quite a site and I love watching them. The turtles come, dozens of them. We lose count as we watch them. You can see the little heads from a distance and then when they arrive their bodies are of various sizes. One is a snapping turtle and reminds me of the king dragon in ‘How to Train a Dragon’, he’s so big. The kids ooh and awe and we all watch as the turtles vie for attention. Even the little fish jump at the chance to eat some spit. A lady goes by and says, “It’s not fair to spit, they’re not getting anything for their actions!” She laughs, though, and it’s all good.

As we turn around at the end of the boardwalk we go back to watching the boats. I meet a few more people and talk briefly about Washington and how much I love it here. One man says another place is better since it has more to do but he doesn’t understand how much I need the solitude for now. I’m looking to buy a boat not a house and so when the time comes where I can be with the multitudes again, I can do so. My front yard can be where ever I choose.

We went to other docks and finished our day with ice cream from Scoops. We waited for a rainstorm to pass and then finally made it back to my car a little wet and a lot of laughter. Days like this help to give me life while I go back to my town with its land-locked, high traffic, busyness, that tries to drive me insane. Breathing deeply and marking these sites at the waterfront helps me to make it another couple of weeks back at home.

thank you for reading,

me

 

What’s it like to be me?

What’s it like to be me? What is my ‘normal’ day like? Lately, my day begins when I go to bed at night. As I finally get ready to go to bed exhausted, no matter the time, sometimes 10, sometimes midnight… I always go to bed exhausted. Then my children think it’s a great time to talk. I love this. I cherish this, they are a part of my heart line and I love to know them… but I’m exhausted, couldn’t we have talked a couple of hours ago? Finally after shooing them away with enough love and hugs I settle down to sleep. It used to take me hours to fall asleep while I had so much on my mind but now it’s so much better. Now I fall asleep within minutes. I wake slightly a few times in the night as the dogs I sleep with decide they are cold and want under the covers with me but mostly I sleep well. Sometimes in the early morning I hear my daughter cry because of a nightmare and I climb out of bed and hold her some for a few minutes and then try to go back to bed again. But once I wake after 4 in the morning there’s really no point in sleeping because sleep will not come. If I wake fully after 2 I will likely fall back to sleep but it will take a while.

When morning comes, often before, I wake up and make my way to the table to have a cup of coffee and to write. I love this hour or two before the rest of the world wakes. It’s my time, it’s precious and it builds me up. I write some on my blog or I write in my journal or both. I never dreamed in a thousand years that I’d be a writer some day. If I have to go to my rotation site then I go get my shower and start my day after I’ve written some and had my coffee. If I have the day off then I write or read until the kids wake up, about 8. I love this part of my life. The next several hours are packed full of doing things. Things that have to be done like laundry, or cooking, or studying, or paying bills, or making calls, or finding someone to fix my car or mow my lawn. Then the evening comes and I start all over again…

That’s just the physical world around me… Inside? Inside is different. Inside I worry and think. I pray and I hope. I hear my child ask for a hug and I give it to him or her. I see my kids avoid life on their computers or phones and I make them go outside. I ask about school and see how they are doing. And I dream. I dream of getting my degree and of earning the top spot in my virtual franchise that I’ve been in for years. I dream of living on a boat and of learning to sail. I dream of waking up to the waves and the rain. Of waking to the sounds of birds and of wind. I dream of living a life that I love. I already love my life, though, but I dream of making it less on physical things and more on the things that truly matter. I see myself as a calm spot in the midst of chaos. I see others being able to rely on me for peace and hope. I see myself being able to provide counseling and love to others. I wonder again why I am in this loveless town so far from the water. I can see myself teaching and I know that I can make a difference in other’s lives.

There’s another part of me that I’m just beginning to understand. I love hard. I’ve always loved hard. What I didn’t realize was that when I do I lose a piece of myself. I need the water and the sea to help me find me. As much as I love people and want so much to help them, it drains me. I need space and openness and the outdoors to refuel me. I really do need the quiet and the sea to breathe deeply. I can feel when someone is upset, and when I do I yearn to help them. The problem is sometimes I can’t help. And often times there are many people all at once. One or two or even five or six or heaven forbid ten or more people whose emotions blast me like a fire. Sometimes that’s what it feels like. How do I function when there are so many? This is why I take my escapes like others take medicine. Without my escapes I cannot refuel and I begin to fall into the chaos with the others. What good am I if I cannot breathe?

thank you for reading,

me

Ambulatory Rotation

Another month of pharmacy school has gone by, this one at a doctor’s office where I was able to work with an amazing team. Each day we had new people come in to ask questions about the meds, to find out how to get healthy again, to find out how to stay healthy… these people, patients, needed time to digest what their doctors have told them. They needed time spent face to face to go over their conditions and to know that someone was listening to them. We would often spend an hour or more talking with them, getting to know them, finding out their likes and their dislikes, finding out how we can help them take charge of their health. It was humbling.

They would look to us because we understood their conditions and because we understood their medicines. They would trust us when we told them they needed to change something because their kidneys were bad, or because if they stayed on it they’d mess up their hearts. We would help them understand how to take their blood thinners and how to measure their sugars. We did all of this and so much more.

One man came in with blood pressure to the roof and we put him directly with a doctor and recommended what would help right away. An hour later his blood pressure was back down and he understood a little better how dangerous that could be.

One lady came in and just happened to mention she felt like an elephant was sitting on her chest a few nights before, she was there to check her blood thinner. We sent her back for an ECG to make certain she would be OK to go home.

Another couple came in because his blood work didn’t look good, they were scared, they thought this must mean the end is coming quicker than they thought. We were able to give them comfort and reassurance that all he needed to do was change his diet some, drink more water, and have an evening walk every night. Simple things that every one can do to prevent the fears they had that day. His wife began to cry she was so relieved that this was something they could handle.

Another man came in to make certain he wasn’t bleeding internally because of his blood thinner. He had started it because of a blood clot of unknown origin. I see him sitting there and I wonder quietly like the rest why it happened and pray to myself it’s not an early sign of cancer.

Real people, real blood, real dreams, real lives. Dozens of them over the last month. And to think a pharmacist does nothing but count pills? Nonsense.

thank you for reading,

me

Life is for living

Live dangerously. Take chances. Dream. We all come into this world the same way. We all leave it the same way too. We are born and we die. We know how it begins and we know how it ends, why not make the middle more interesting? That’s the living part.

I’m tired of living vicariously through others. I want my own adventures, my own chances to fail. I want to live for the sake of living. It’s interesting, coming to the end of my school career. I’ll be a licensed pharmacist by this time next year. So what am I going to do with it? Who am I going to be? How do I want my life to look in ten years? five? three?

It’s easier to know what I don’t want than to know what I want. I don’t want where I’m at. I don’t want to get up, go to work, wish I was off, go home, go to sleep, and get up and do it all over again. I can hear my ‘friends’ saying, “but that’s what growing up is all about”. I can hear them saying, “get over it.” But I don’t care what they say. I don’t want that and so I am not going to put up with that either. I can hear them again, “you’ll learn” and totally discounting me, thinking I’m naive and that I just don’t know anything.

But I do know. I do know a lot. I’m not a kid, I’m in my 40s. I’m not naive, I have an incredible grasp of life. Maybe that’s the problem? Because I have such a grasp of life and because I understand how amazingly fragile it is, maybe that’s why I refuse to let it slip away unnoticed. I refuse to give up or give in. Not ever, never again.

I will not let my life go unnoticed. I will not let the days slip by without recognizing the love and the pain around me. I write. I write to save my memories and to remember my dreams. So what do I want in the next few years? Freedom, peace, adventure, love. I know something others around me don’t realize. I know that people do live lives they love. I’ve met them and I want to be like them. I’m not saying I don’t love my life now, I’m saying that I am not content to let it be this way forever. I am content that today I will go to work to learn and that I will be challenged and tired. I am happy to do that today. Even tomorrow and so on for weeks, months, maybe even years. What I am not content to do is allow my work life to be my only life. I will play and I will live.

thank you for reading,

me

Marriage? Love?

What does a good marriage look like? Is it like the Cinderella story where they live ‘happily ever after’? One of the things I often wonder about is how I’ll know if I want to get married again. How will I know what a healthy relationship looks like? I mean, it’s not exactly like I’ve figured it out or anything. I can’t just say the opposite of what I’ve seen or lived through… maybe I can create it? But I don’t want to. I’m learning there are things I just don’t want to do and don’t even want to bother with lately. Like where is my passion, actually? Oh! I’m passionate. I am. I just don’t want a relationship. Is that wrong? Of course not. What I want is what I want and there’s nothing wrong with that. So what do I want if I don’t want a guy? Gosh… I want freedom, I want adventure, I want peace and time alone. I want to sit and relax and read or write and do whatever the hell I want to do. And if that means I want to be around other people then I can put myself somewhere there are lots of people. But live with another person? Go to sleep next to another person?? Makes me cringe… unless it’s my babies. I love my babies, I love snuggling my kids.

Just a few thoughts right now as life for some around me becomes even more complicated…

thanks for reading,

me

Sunshine and Rotations

I’ve been busy these past couple of weeks. It’s like I barely have time to breathe. As a Student Pharmacist I am required to do rotations, and the last year of school is all rotations. I’m not complaining. I love it! I love actually having a chance to use all of the things I’ve learned. I love being able to work with real patients, real people, real lives. It’s hard work. This rotation is in the hospital environment and so my patients are sick, really sick. If I can do something that helps them to get better or to feel better so that they can go home then I have done well.

Each person, each patient, is so very individual. There is no one who is treated exactly the same because no one is exactly the same. Pharmacy is intricate. I love it. This week I’ve already been touched by the lives of dozens of people. Elderly mothers, grandmothers, great grandmothers… in their 80s and 90s. Men who are forced to the hospital by their wives. People who suffer chronically from pain. And people who have lived such lives that it’s not a surprise they show up in the emergency room.

I look on and I wonder how they got there. I wonder what went wrong, what could make them better. It’s not all about the medicine. There’s a man who is an alcoholic and now has nowhere to go, another who is recovering from cancer, a lady who doesn’t qualify for a transplant. There are many who go home well, and there are others. These others who now have to face the end of their time here. Who now have to face the reality of death. Life is 100% fatal and there’s no way around it.

I’m reminded to be grateful for my health and yet I am also reminded that my health is not a mistake. I work hard for it. I eat healthy food, lots of fresh fruits and vegetables. I drink a lot of water. I take the stairs frequently. I exercise. I sleep… I try to balance my life in a way that keeps me healthy. It’s not an accident. Health is only maintained on purpose. Sure, there are things we cannot control, but those in the hospital? Most of them had more control than they knew. Most of them could have prevented themselves from needing to be there. The smoker could have quit, the obese woman could have gotten help sooner, the alcoholic as well.

So, I wonder, as I go there each day, how did things go wrong? What happened? Why did these people quit taking care of themselves? Or why did no one ever tell them they had a choice? Please don’t bash me. It’s true. Absolutely true, there are things that can not be avoided. But, trust me here, you (and I) have a lot more control of how we end up than we believe. Even the smallest of positive changes can be celebrated for every little change can be built upon and then, then, our lives can be full and healthy.

thank you for reading,

me