He just had a birthday on October 12, he has a silly personality. I get told a lot he is hyper, I think he’s just happy…
Laughing To The Grave
Can anything be funny or are some things off-limits?
In my opinion, there are times you need to be serious and try not to make light of a situation. I also believe in serious moments, humor happens. Here are a few examples.
After our twins were born. The hospital gave us an option to have a visitation, people could come and see Willy and Gabe before they took them. I wasn’t for sure I was up to it or not but my husband had purchased mementos he wanted to give to everyone. That night all my friends, his parents, and brothers came up to visit. I was sitting up in bed, most of my friends were sitting on the side with me. A nurse who was assigned to my room when they first diagnosed my Premature Labor came in to tell me she was sorry to hear about my loss. She did this out of genuine compassion because she was not assigned to me during this time. The whole room was quiet as she expressed her sympathy, which wasn’t easy at all for her to do. The only noise you could hear was people catching their breath and sniffing. My friend Sarah pats my arm, gets up off my bed, walks over and pulls a wad of kleenex out of the box and blows her nose like an eighty year old man in the doctor’s office with a hanky! My friend Allison was the first one to laugh than me and after that there we all were!
I also chose for the hospital to put the funeral on for Gabe and Willy. Which took us to a cemetery here in town, it’s a big cemetery. They have a designated area for the babies, on top of a hill. You have to walk over another hill before you get to the top of this one. My mom, me and my friend Allison were watching people as they were trying to carefully walk down this muddy hill. One lady wasn’t so lucky as the mud got the best of her. To the ground she went and rolled like a barrel all the way down…
My dad is the serious one in my parents marriage. He secretly digs my moms humor, which sometimes involves him. Not long ago we were all out to eat together. We got on the subject of an acquaintance of theres who had a spouse that recently passed. They had found another companion. I asked my mom if she thought it was weird that she was “back in the saddle”. My mom says. “Shelley not at all, I’m engaged to be married the day after your dads funeral…” I laughed hard as my dad sat there shaking his head, rolling his eyes, and not even giving the slightest smile.
We have talked many times about where I work. My residents are Visually Impaired. When one of them passes on its hard for some of are residents to get out and go to their funeral. We have memorials here in the building in honor of the resident who passes away. This allows residents to be able to talk about their “good times”. We did this recently for “Jack” when he died. We had quite a few who came down. They sat in the dining-room. We have couches that make a square all the way around the room, They started from right to left, “Emmet” was on the other side which would make her last. They let everyone know that they had to wait their turn. Each one of the residents were standing up telling the preacher about one thing they remember doing with “Jack” or something funny he said. All the other residents and staff quietly sat and listened meanwhile Emmett was raising her hand, standing halfway up to try to raise it further, she would get tired of holding that hand up and start in with the other, grunting, moaning, whispering pick me pick me…
I call these “hold Ons” constellations to shine down on us in times of darkness giving us hope and a future.
When Childhood Ends, Write about a defining moment in your life when you are forced to grow up in an instant (for a series of instants)
There are a few moments that define when I was no longer a child. I have been faced with decisions in my life especially with the twins, even with that decision I wonder if the state I was in at that moment of my life if it was a rash decision or a decision made out of anger and pain… It may be a topic we talk about one day or not. It’s a controversial subject it would open doors for others to chime in and I have come to far to open all those sores.
My husband and I take drives every now and then to get out-of-town, not to far, far enough where we have time to talk, talk about the things we don’t normally discuss at home during the work week and raising our son. I can’t remember the exact date. What I do remember is thinking “this is what it feels like to be a grown-up) We were on the subject of ex-girlfriends and boyfriends. If you have read my about me, I-am wife number three for my husband. He will tell you the first wife was a mistake. We barely talk about her, as he says “it don’t matter because there is no history” take that comment however you want because it’s for the best.
His second wife is where conversations get complicated. They have children together, he did love her, and enjoyed their friendship. On the day we took this drive, we had just found out some news about her and her husband that was concerning to him. It brought him back to a conversation that they had together before their divorce and her new marriage. I could tell Steve was having a bit of a hard time explaining his emotions he had going on inside, to me. I-am typically a jealous woman when it comes to him but this particular day I told him it was okay to share his hurt and regret with me. I felt led to keep my mouth shut for him and that is what I did. He was able to tell his story without me sighing, chiming in, explaining his feelings and all the other bull that comes along with those certain conversations.
I recently told you about another mishaps regarding the ex-wife and the daughter. (click here) I did take the advice of a few of my readers. I apologized with a brief note and she accepted and told me that she appreciated my apology.
A Different Perspective
I was talking on the phone with my friend Michelle the other day about what I wanted to do with my life. It’s always been a regular conversation piece with us. She’s grounded and always challenges my pipe dreams. I told her I was thinking about changing my career path in school. (which by the way I have never started) to Social work. I do lots of talking and dreaming, please don’t feel like you need to chime in and tell me I can do it or still have time. It’s not what I-am going after in this post.
“Shelley I think you should continue to counsel people like you have been doing most of your life I think once you go into that career there’s red tape, it might mangle your outlook and damage the angle you do take with people.
I would suppose there is lots of truth in what she said
As long as I can remember people have confided in me, not only sharing their ideas or rundavoos but tragedies, mistakes, and what ifs. In my middle-age years I’ve come to think of it as a gift. I believe I was given the gift of love. It’s always been easy for me to do, more than the alternative. I will admit sometimes I fudge up but I try to keep my eye on the ball. I made a pact to myself when I was younger that I wouldn’t call people names for what they looked like or what they did or didn’t have. As I grew older my pact grew.
When your younger it’s all about looks, what you wear, and money. In your older years those things do follow but people start damning you for your choices, thoughts, and mistakes. I-am not going to tell you that I sit and agree with everything that is shared with me. It’s not my place to try to fix or change anyone either. My place in this world is to love and you can never steer anyone wrong with love.
One year in Two-Thousand-Three or Four, I was working with a cook. She worked every other weekend with me. On Sundays it was always just me and her working. She lived right behind the building we worked in. In the mornings from the dining room windows I would watch as she stumbled into work late.
She was tall, skinny and had light-brown shoulder link hair, It looked like she didn’t brush it. I would open the back door for her and she would say, “It was another rough night Shelley”. I would smile, say hello and act like I didn’t hear what she said, not because of conflict but because the heaviness in her eyes and the frown on her face told me a story.
I knew I would hear
We were taking a break in the living-room of our job one fall afternoon. I can still see the multicolored colored leaves on all the tress around the windows that lined the Living-room of where we were sitting. She was on one couch and I was on another one across from her. She slurred asking me “How my day was going” being so long ago I don’t quite remember what I told her, knowing me something light-hearted one of the residents did or said to cheer up the moment of awkwardness, we had going on since we hadn’t had too much conversation.
Her: Do you have any children?
We sat in silence for a few brief moment after I answered my question. Deep down for some reason I didn’t feel lead to return the question but noticed her head dropped down right along with her face as I gave her a look and a smile.
Her: Do you want any?
Her: I have three children my oldest are sixteen and eighteen, they’re in Foster-Care. We get to visit on Wednesdays if they want to see me, which usually they do.
“It’s nice you all get together”
Her: We talk about their sister who is three. She just got adopted. It’s an open adoption and in this open adoption they get pictures of her, and I don’t. They show them to me when we visit. We will spend our visit discussing the pictures. They’re a good conversation piece.
The couple who adopted her lives in the country. Before the adoption went through, they were nice enough to let me come out for home visits. After we had gotten acquainted. They have a nice big yard for her to play in, with one of those big wooden swing-sets, a pool and animals. She’s happy Shelley and that’s all that matters. As her voice cracked tears streamed down my face just like they are right now.
“I’m glad she’s happy”
Her: You want to know something? Some days I take a drive out where she lives. If she’s playing outside, I pull over and watch her. I daydream about getting out of my car, walking up into the field, stand there and see if she sees me. I wonder if she would come running yelling “mommy” Mommy” and remember who I am. I come back to reality. I have multiple addictions and have for years, I just can’t do it.
I nodded my head and told her crying, Thank you for sharing not only a painful but dark-side of your life with me, also for giving me a different perspective to an Open Adoption.
Towards the end of my Foster-Care Class, the teacher was on the subject of Open Adoption and asked the class “Could you be a part of one”?
I raised my hand and told her and the class the same exact encounter I had with this woman “yes I wouldn’t have made a life changing decision to be a Foster Parent without this mother of a child who forfeited her “happiness” for a lifetime of heartache and what ifs.
Apartment 116 Second Half
Do you remember back in April when I wrote this post? Please take a minute to read so you can catch up on this resident of mine. I like to refer to as “Emmet Brown”. You know “Doc” from Back To The Future”? The reason I have named this resident after “doc” is because of privacy laws, which is crucial in the medical field. I also want you to be able to imagine her, not just her looks but demeanor also.
Our facility is one level. I don’t know the square foot right off-hand. It is however a square, that goes in a circle. This way residents know where they’re going. The middle of the wall is lined with a thick wooden rail in case the residents need them for guidance, since they are without site or if they need a little support for balance.
“Emmet”used to do her laps (exercise) around the hall wearing her headphones with these Giant, black, circled sunglasses, singing Belinda Carlisle “Circle In The Sand” it goes something like this.
Sundown all around
Walking thru the summer’s end
Waves crash baby, don’t look back
I won’t walk away again
Oh, baby, anywhere you go,
We are bound together
I begin, baby, where you end
Some things are forever!
Circle in the sand
‘Round and ’round
Never ending love is what we’ve found
And you complete the heart of me
Our love is all we need
Circle in the sand
Cold wind, tide move in
Shiver in the salty air
Day breaks, my heart aches
I will wait for you right here.
Oh, baby when you look for me
Can you see forever?
I begin baby, where you end
We belong together
Circle in the sand
‘Round and ’round
Rising of the moon as the sun goes down
And you complete the heart of me
Our love is all we need
Circle in the sand
Circle in the sand
Baby can you hear me?
Every time she sang the round and round part she would actually circle round in round. She’s a lover of music. I know this because of the fourteen years I have been there. I bet you would never guess that she used to teach piano, she has her bachelors in music, she plays the piano by ear, and if you want to know a name of song, person, or group who sings it just ask, nine times out of ten she can tell you. This is phenomenal, at least to me? We have more Helen Keller stories.
I don’t want to take anything away from Keller but did you know her teacher Johanna “Anne” Sullivan? Who also was legally blind? She contracted trachoma a highly infectious eye infection, when she was eight years old which left her blind without reading or writing skills. Her mother also died around this same time and her father abandoned her because he felt he could not raise her and her brother on her own. They were sent to an almshouse in Tewksbury Massachusetts, her brother suffered from a debilitating hip ailment and died as well. She remained at Tewksbury for four years. She had eye operations that offered relief for her eye pain but proved ineffective. I-am not going to plagiarise the whole story. I just want to give you the background of another phenomenal person who walked a step behind, read the story when you get time. I read it with another resident of mine a few nights ago. We both were taken back by what we didn’t know about Anne.
The home has offered me more than a laugh and I hope I gave you that clarity in this post, Also a part of the world that you miss and I don’t. Have you not felt that way in your life? Where you asked yourself why can’t everyone experience this?
The other day in Emmets room giving her, her medicine she informs me she is “Pissed” I do a double take because she is not a social person except to the voices in her head.
Me: Why are you “Pissed”
Emmet: I called Recycled Records to ask him when Charles Hardin Holley (Also known as Buddy) Birthday was? He told me an a firm voice, “I don’t know call your local library and ask them”
Me: Did you call the local library
Emmet: I called the operator and she didn’t know the number to the “local library” nor did she know when Holley’s Birthday was…
Me: Emmet what made you think of this question
Emmett: I was listening to his song “Think It Over” and starting thinking over his Birthday….
I always ask questions. You learn from them. My residents have taught me things I didn’t know or thought about and these things I will take with me and not forget because of the way they tell the story.
Charles Hardin Holley (September 7, 1936 – February 3, 1959)
Johanna “Anne” Mansfield Sullivan Macy (April 14, 1866 – October 20, 1936) She died holding Keller’s hand. What started out as a “Job” being a teacher ended in a life long friendship…
Is Inked Up
This Is Messed Up
My First Guest Post
My son Gabe, is in kindergarten this year. He is doing good. He says he likes kindergarten but also enjoys stay home days, (which are Saturday and Sunday). Every week they have “Person Of The Day” and Gabe was the guy. I thought all of you would enjoy seeing what my main squeeze had to say. All of the kids had to draw a picture of Gabe doing what he loved. I picked one out of twenty-four because its too much right now to put them all up here!
Hello Good People,
Question: In a place of work, do You feel its appropriate to have YOUR staff members write notes explaining what to do and what not to do on the job?
Example: Who left the front door unlocked “Peter” the boss would like to know?
Example: Don’t forget to make appointment for mornings and initial the clip board when you do bath and showers….
A Peek Inside
Steven I’m glad you don’t follow me
I realize your a smoker and know when you try to quit you don’t like me
In order to keep the flame burning I choose not to draw my sword
I have a confession
I don’t think you know how hard I laugh
when you walk out on the deck at 3:00am
To burn one up in your undies!