Moving On…

Hello to All of My Followers and Bloggers: I hope all are well!!!   I got a little bored with doing my blog…took a break…yesterday thought of a new blog based on my experience as a caregiver for my mom. I realize many of you may not have a need for this topic in your lives, but you may know someone who is a caregiver or will be a caregiver or you might become a caregiver. Anyway, this will be my last post (I think) on this blog, but here is my new blog:

The Caregiver Gig

“Tell Me What You Pay Attention To and I Will Tell You Who You Are.”-Jose Ortega y Gasset

This morning, the singing of the birds beckoned me to rise from my bed and start the day on a positive note. As I rose, I thought about the interview I saw last week on Oprah’s OWN station with Oprah interviewing the writer, Sue Monk Kidd. In 2002, I read Kidd’s, “The Secret Life of Bees” and loved it…didn’t love the books that came after. Recently, I read her latest book, “The Invention of Wings,” which I really enjoyed, but not as much as “…Bees.” Anyway, I thought of what Sue Monk Kidd said in the interview…to paraphrase, she said, “We become what we pay attention to.” I’ve been thinking about that since I heard it and trying to be more positive in life…instead of focusing on minor aches and pains or inventing “what if” scenarios for things that may never happen. I’m focusing on what I am grateful and thankful for. The singing of the birds inspired a quick haiku this morning:


I heard singing birds
Calling my name to join them
So I rose and did.

And now, just as I finished printing the haiku, my wonderful husband just put on“Looking into You: A Tribute To Jackson Browne” CD with Don Henley and Blind Pilot singing, “These Days,” yes, so thankful. “Well, I’ll keep on moving, things are bound to be improving, these days.” (Jackson Browne)

We become what we pay attention to…yes…music always helps…we just listened to Roseanne Cash’s newest album on vinyl, “The River and the Thread” and we give it a thumbs up, especially “Etta’s Song,” which I can listen to over and over again. It’s a beautifully produced album, just the pureness of Roseanne’s clear voice and the clarity of the instruments and her wonderful musician husband/arranger John Leventhal. We are also looking forward to listening to our newly acquired, “Quiet About It: Tribute to Jesse Winchester,” which we’ll listen to later. This cd was released in 2012. It was so very sad to learn of Jesse’s death. He was a beautiful songwriter and had such a lovely presence on stage.
My readers…I have been checking in to see what’s going on in your blogs and am enjoying all that I read. I hope to return more vigorously to my blog. I am thinking of using a new WordPress theme and perhaps when my son returns from India for a vacation in June, we’ll work on it together. He is finishing his first year of teaching in India and has one more year to go. From there who knows where he’ll go, but he’ll go. Just this morning, when we saw each other on Skype, he said he has amazing parents and he is who he is because of his upbringing. Music to my ears. As a parent, you do what you do and hope something sinks in and you don’t expect any thank yous or accolades, but my son is always giving us applause…this from a kid who didn’t like reading or writing and went to school to socialize. It’s heartwarming hearing his hopes, dreams and the absolute confidence he has in himself. He said he and his girlfriend have a 5-year plan…it’s great that they are doing all of this traveling now before children and mortgages, don’t you think? My daughter is doing well in NYC; my mom is hanging in there and for over 90 she’s doing great! My hubby recently retired, but is continuing to work at his present job 2.5 days per week…there are still bills to be paid and improvements on the home to be made and then he’ll fully retire. It’s so wonderful we live in the same town where he works. Now that the nice weather is here, I am doing my daily walks in the park and paying attention to everything I see there. I want to become what I pay attention to. Ah…now Jimmy Lafave is singing Jackson Browne’s “For Everyman,”
“Everybody’s just waiting to hear from the one
Who can give them the answers
And lead them back to that place in the warmth of the sun
Where sweet childhood still dances
Who’ll come along
And hold out that strong and gentle father’s hand?”-Jackson Browne

I remember Linda Loman telling her sons, “Attention Must Be Paid,” and I never forgot that line from Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller. Willy mattered to Linda and wanted him to matter to their boys as well despite Willy’s shortcomings. If we become what we pay attention to, perhaps we have to look further into someone to see their goodness and pay attention to that instead of all of the “what ifs,” and “what coulda beens.”

NOTE:  I had a lot of trouble printing this posting the way I usually do!!!!  I usually take my word doc and copy and paste it using the “comic sans” font and it usually looks very nice and the hyperlinks work out well, too. Well today, the print looks so plain when I paste it and none of my hyperlinks came out…I had to insert them on the blog itself. If you understand what happened, please advise…Thanks!!!!!

 

 

Showing Up

 

Knowing how nervous I would be to drive to mom’s this morning, my husband drove me early at 7am so as not to interfere with his going to work. I just needed to see for myself that mom was ok since I didn’t see her yesterday. She was fine. My husband also shoveled a bit at mom’s even though our service shoveled there last night; it snowed in the wee hours of the morning again. That’s love. Showing up.

 Very True Haiku for My Husband:

He promised my Dad

A meal I would never miss

He has kept his word.

This is absolutely true; my dad was concerned that my husband had no money and wasn’t earning much money and came from a family that struggled and couldn’t help us. He told my dad I would always be well fed.

Birthdays Ain’t What They Used to Be

        

“Expect nothing. Live frugally on surprise.”-Alice Walker

61 years ago today, I was born in Brooklyn to a stay-at-home mom and a working dad. We lived in a 2-family attached brick house downstairs from my grandparents and shared an alley. How glorious to leave our kitchen through a door and race up 2 flights to my Bubbie and Zadie and just hang out with them. Mom returned to college when I was about 7 and dad, hurt both physically and emotionally during WW II was sick on and off with heart attacks at a young age and a bad back; he retired early. Dad would do the shopping and the chauffeuring. Mom also learned how to drive so that when dad couldn’t, she could get him to doctor appts.  I had a brother who was 4 and a half years older; a beautiful child; looked like a model! He had a rough relationship with my dad and probably a whole host of other problems that weren’t surfaced enough for us to see. We shared a love of reading and music. He got caught up in drugs for many years, Heroin… and even though he was recovering, he died nearly 21 years ago from AIDS. Dad died 23 years ago. Mom retired after dad died, took care of my brother in her home and after he died,  sold the house in Brooklyn and came out to the suburbs to be close to me and my family. I continue to miss my dad and my brother and I’m glad they knew my children and my children remember them. We used to have birthday celebrations with the whole family, but, at 61, both my husband and I like quiet celebrations and don’t stand on ceremony. Today I’ll see mom in the morning as usual; I’ll talk to my daughter on the phone; perhaps I’ll talk with my son in India and my husband and I will enjoy the chicken currently brining in the fridge overnight. Today is also the birthday of Carole King (72) and Alice Walker (70). I remember buying “Tapestry” in 1971. We still listen to it.  I’m in great, great company!!!!!

Before I Leave The Stage by Alice Walker

 

Before I leave the stage

I will sing the only song

I was meant truly to sing.

It is the song

of I AM.

Yes: I am Me

&

You.

WE ARE.

I love Us with every drop

of our blood

every atom of our cells

our waving particles

-undaunted flags of our Being-

neither here nor there.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Sadness Addiction Leaves Behind

“Addiction begins with the hope that something “out there” can instantly fill up the emptiness inside.” Jean Kilbourne, Can’t Buy My Love

When I heard Philip Seymour Hoffman died, I knew it had to be a heroin overdose and when I heard they found him in his bathroom with a needle still in his arm, I was reminded of Lenny Bruce who was found the same way. We’ve all heard the specialists tell us that addiction is a disease and it is. It’s just so sad…he was someone’s beloved son…someone’s significant other….the father of 3 children whom he dearly loved and was very involved in their lives. Philip Seymour Hoffman had such gifts that we, the viewing audience, can revisit, but his family is left to grieve…to wonder what else they could’ve done…to mourn the abyss that will always be with them. I feel for them.

 

 

 

 

The Cold

“I am fascinated by language in daily life: the way it can evoke an emotion, a visual image, a complex idea, or a simple truth.”-Amy Tan

Here’s a little ditty I just composed:

You’ve got to be kidding, it’s 9 degrees!

Icicles are dangling from the trees.

The basement where I write has no heat

My first cup of coffee can’t be beat.

Thinking of what must be done today

Is a short list, but meant to keep things at bay

I’ll exercise, eat breakfast, get over to Mom’s

Do what I do which equals several balms:

A balm for the heart

A balm for the feet

A balm to maintain a steady beat.

A Parent, A Child, We do what we do

The season doesn’t matter for Me and You

Just this cold gets me rattled, but I’m grateful for so much

Like my Hubby, Children, Mom, Heat and such!

So, on with the day, forward in my path

No time to waste on Winter Wrath.

**There’s a great album my husband and I listen to, especially in the winter. It’s a compilation with John Gorka, Christine Lavin, Patty Larkin, Bill Morrissey and others, it’s called “On A Winter’s Night” and truly every song is a gem. Here’s John Gorka doing Bill Morrissey’s “She’s That Kind of Mystery.”

Having Trouble Sticking To Your New Year’s Resolutions?

This young man, Jeff Moore of Everydaypowerblog is certainly someone to watch. Check out his blog.

Everyday Power Blog

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Having trouble keeping your New Years Resolutions? I will be online with a host from HGTV talking about how we can use technology to stay committed to our goals! Follow the link for more info! See you all January 16th at 4PM EST!!!
http://dailylounge.com/round-table/entry/keeping-your-new-years-resolution-with-tech

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