Sittin On A Porch

Sittin On A Porch
Our little back porch

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Catching my stride

I have not had the nerve to try the pain patches again.  I feel like I understand the phrase, "pain management".  It does not say painless, but managed.  That has been a huge help post pain patch, or ppp.  I take a whole oxy in the morning after breakfast and a half at night half an hour before I go to bed.  That combination helps to manage the worst of the pain.  I still get an oops once in a while, but who at this age doesn't?  I am in pain, but the pain is knocked down below "throwing up with pain".  Then if I choose what I do and don't do with thought to the pain, I can do so much more, by doing less.  Does that make any sense?  I needed to get the trailer here that we still live in clean.  The new house in all of it's horror was looking better then this place.  Working sometimes on one task for the day I got the overall basics done by Sunday.  Each day I could do a little more, but stopped and rested more often.  I try to drink as much water as possible to keep flushing the poisons from my body instead of letting them build up.  But then I need to increase my sodium because lately I have been washing it out also.  So when Bug and I went to Thomasville to buy the materials for our counter top I had a house margarita at Applebee's, with salt around the rim.  It was 2 for 1 and even though I don't normally drink anything but red wine, I threw caution to the wind and enjoyed my drink and my lunch with my favorite guy.

Bug has really been making an extra effort to spend time with me.  To be patient of me as I am slow, string unrelated words together that do not make sentences or sense.  So Saturday riding up to see the flower Rose Show meant more to me then I can ever explain.  My mother belonged to the Woman's Club, the Garden Club, the Women's Circle at church, Friends of the Library, Historical Society, etc. etc. and so on.  The only thing she enjoyed about the garden club was flower arranging.  She could grow orchids like no body's business, but that is because she built an environment in the back yard for them that she never had to do anything at all.  Every other plant that my mother tried to nurture, even plastic plants on a piece of drift wood would slowly die off, leaf by leaf and end up in a pile on the ground.  Bless her Heart.  She knew it, and was quite the nature person and loved trees and flowers, but just didn't have a green thumb.  However, each year at the garden show she usually took home a blue ribbon, if not the best in show.  This was the 60's and 70's and the introduction of exotic flowers from Hawaii.  Flowers that now where becoming cheap enough for the flower stores to carry, especially during flower shows.

Mother's arrangements have been on covers of garden program.  She was one of the ladies who introduced, Ikebana (|生け花, "living flowers") the Japanese art of flower arrangement, also known as kadō ( 花道, the "way of flowers") to the ladies of the garden club.  She also insisted that the children's garden club also were given instruction as to Ikebana.  I loved arranging flowers, but not being competitive I did not enjoy having to do it for shows.  But to this day as I cut flowers and put them in a vase I think about the three points, the proportions of each point to each other, the geometry of the points and how to incorporate the color and design of the flowers and foliage into the design.  Looking at the arrangements triangles and measurements appeared in the flowers and how they moved the color through the arrangements tying them together.  It was like what angel voices look like.  The color the glory, beauty and sheer joy of flowers.  Bug still thinks some of my flowers would have won. 

I am doing something that I do not normally do as a habit.  I am cutting the flowers in my yard and bringing them into the house.  I have hardest time cutting my flowers, picking my veggies and herbs.  I have already started using more of my fresh herbs and of course the food is more delicious and for those who grow herbs know that most herbs respond bigger and more beautiful with a little regular snipping.  I am almost loving all the flowers in the house, and I am able to rotate through them as more bloom.  Here are a couple of photos from yesterday morning:

I love flowers in the house, and the fact that I am growing them only makes it better.

Sunday, I overslept and missed the first of Charles Osgood.  It was the death issue.  What a show for me to miss.  But it is okay, I picked up a lot of good information and things for me to do because of the show.  I will make an appointment to meet with hospice.  I will get the list of cremation facilities and start acting like a responsible adult.  Who knows there might be a green cemetery in the area.  But I can go ahead and make the arrangements for things and get that out of the way and off of my husband who is overwhelmed enough with two houses a sick wife, parents and well, life. 

Yesterday took the truck down to St. Marks to pick up the boat so that he can work on it.  One more thing on his plate.  The sky grew darker and more ominous as we headed west and south to the coast.  The storm was hundred of miles away but it was coming.  Destruction rolling over towns and homes and forest and ripping things up and throwing them into the air.  It was gloomy but the sun would peak in and out as the layers of clouds moved and crashed into each other.  The temperature was extremely comfortable and the boat started right up, as always and we had a lovely ride up the water gorged river.  The vegetation grows down to the very edge of the water, but now that the water has left its banks and meandering back into the woods it is hard to tell where the river used to start and end.  The river was deep, but lots of trees and snags and rocks below so our slow putter up the river was perfect.  I laid on the front deck, he fished from the back.  He caught a small bass and was happy.  It was quickly released even though we would have loved to bring it back and release it to the pond, we weren't set up for that and didn't want to take a chance and simply end up killing it.  It swam happily off.  We have released a couple of sliders over at the pond.  Anytime we find a turtle on the road we stop.  Now we have property for them.  I have no idea if they will stay or if they have already headed off in search of a mate or a new pond.  I love turtles. 

We trolled up the river and ate fish and oyster sandwiches at Riverside Café.  It was a beautiful day.  Bug and I seem to each be appreciating spending time together.  We do like each other, and I am going to try and make more of an effort to spend part of each day with him at the other house.  There is more then enough to do, but he has put my rattan in the Florida room so there are places for me to sit and lay down when I get tired.

This new way of dealing with the pain is interesting.  I can feel the difference between my lungs and the lymphatic system.  I see more swollen nodes under my arms.  Maybe they are bigger and more engaged, maybe I am just thinner.  But with this information I can now put the different pains in categories and that helps to mentally treat it.  'That is lung, so it is cancer', 'That is a muscle pain in my back, old age', 'lymphatic pain', and so on.  Really, to look at me, you would not know I am in pain.  And right now as I sit here writing, I am not uncomfortable.  I just sort of feel like I am running low.  I still feel joy and wonder.  I still live and do things.  Most people would never know looking at me that there was anything wrong.  I like that.  I hope that I can just fall asleep out on my lounge chair on my little back porch at the new house and never wake up.  Not now, of course, but wouldn't that be a lovely way to go. 

Life is still more about life then death for me.  I want to get out and air layer my camellias.  Not today with thunder rumbling and crashing just above the trees. Bob and Harley are asleep at my feet, Edna tried to crawl into a basket half her size so I checked and sure enough the guest bath door was closed.  She huddles behind the toilet when it rains and thunders.  Bob used to be closer to that kind of scared, but as long as I am with him, he is fine.

I hope I have not lead everyone to worry about me or think that I will not be here next week.  I think I have time yet.  I don't know how much, but where a couple of weeks ago on the pain patch I thought it could be sooner, but now, not so worried.  I am worrying too much about getting things done.  I am having nightmares of not graduating from school again.  I always have these when I put too much pressure on myself.  I need to relax and laugh more.  I don't laugh enough these days.

My precious beloved friend, Polly is coming down for Memorial Weekend.  I think Vicki and Nancy said they are coming down, and it might be the same weekend.  Oh how wonderful, it is like winning the visit lottery.  All of my friends love each other, of course, they are precious wonderful dearly beloved people, how could they not love each other when they meet.

But I am feeling pretty good right now, so it is time to get off this couch and get some work done.  I am ready to clean this place and then head over to the house and do a little cleaning there with Bug.

So, yes, I am fading, but you know I will have to play this out for as long as I can.  And as always, I can't express my joy and happiness that it is raining.  That the frog are singing, and air vibrates with the rumbles of thunder and lighting lights up and crackles the rumbling air so that you can feel the energy of the storm standing at an open door.  I know we have had a lot of rain and it is a bit swampy in this part of the world.  But I love the rain.  I cannot complain, it is like warm weather.  I rarely complain about warm or hot weather and rain.  Cold and dry are torturous to me.  I guess I am more insect then reptile.  Maybe I am not physically as evolved.  Hee hee

Lunch on Monday with Judi and Carolyn to try and provide art and crafts supplies to the Jefferson Art Gallery for the summer art program.  I hope Christopher is here for one of the weeks.  I love sending him to an art camp.  I know he could be one of the counselors, and I will ask if they need him.  Ms Judi and Christopher are both Whovians and know each other.  Ms Judi is in charge of the Art Center and she is doing a fine job of it.  So here I go, making plans again.  I want to make dinner for Mother's Day for Mom.  I don't think they will be here for Father's Day, so maybe I will make a custard pie for Dad.  Why I make plans is who I am, but fortunately my friends just roll with me. 

Today's report, I am okay. 
It is raining and I think I shall make something for my husband and take him lunch.
Over all feeling good today.


  1. I am glad that you are okay. I hope that you will take it easy though.

  2. I have read your blog for a long time an read along while you have gone through your journey. Beautiful, raw and honest. Thank you for sharing

  3. I'm a different 'Anonymous' than the one above. I have a blog, but it's private for friends only, so my comments on other blogs are anon. I've been following your journey for a couple of years now, and you're so beautiful inside and out and have become a large part of my heart. I've been praying for you all along and will continue to do so. You are very important to me Kathleen Tonski, and you always will be. For what it's worth.

  4. I'm always worried when you don't post for a few days or longer. (I'm a different anonymous than the two above). I've also been reading your blog since you've been writing it. I'm also in pain, but not from cancer, and learning to live with it. I should also make funeral arrangements, I'm older than you are. I've learned so much from reading your blog. I'm looking forward to you moving into your new house. Bless you and your family.

  5. Kathleen, I so appreciate the details of this sharing of your life. There's such a balance of peace and vigor in this post. And the photo in the header is beautiful. Thank you.

  6. Sittin On A Porch.......WORRIED ABOUT YOU!!!!!! Please let us all know how you are doing.