What an eloquent way to state something so profound.
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Today is the 8th anniversary of my father’s death. It’s a hard day for me but as the years have passed it has gotten slightly easier. I have so many memories of him but for some reason one is resonating with me the most today. This is for him.
I sit across from him
Watching him struggle to find words
That are hiding from him.
It’s painful seeing him struggle to
search for something that was once so easy to find.
Mastery of words was his strength and now
The disease has robbed him of that.
This loss has weakened him in a way that
Makes it hard for me to recognize him.
And that’s what hurts the most.
My father sits across from me
But my dad is gone.
Losing my dad was one of the hardest things I’ve ever gone through. But because of his Alzheimer’s I truly feel like I lost him the summer before he passed. When I think of my dad, I see a man who loved words and could use them so eloquently and express himself so well. In the late stages of the disease, he lost his ability to think of the words he wanted to say. He would just sit there with this determined look on his face, wanting to think of the word so badly. I never knew if I should tell him the word or let him try to think of it himself. Perhaps that’s why this memory is so strong this year. As I’ve mentioned before I’m having a tough time with my stuttering right now. I’m having as much trouble saying words as he did trying to think of them. Man, this feels so awkward to post this on my dad’s anniversary but I think it’s because I’m laying my soul out there for all the blogosphere to see. And it’s absolutely terrifying and I think my dad would be really proud of me for taking this step.
Today I don’t really have much to write about. I spent the day fighting a battle with a head cold. I actually sat down and tried to write something but gave up after almost publishing “Ode To Tater Tots” just because today is National Tater Tot Day. True. Story. Be glad I realized the error of my ways before I hit the “Publish” button. Realizing I wasn’t going to be able to be creative today I made some tweaks to my web site instead. Hopefully tomorrow I’ll be feeling up to writing something worth publishing here. For now, if you need me I’ll be under a quilt on my sofa surrounded by water bottles, tissues, and binge watching shows on Netflix.
The Liebster Awards
I had a wonderful surprise yesterday, I was nominated for a Liebster Award by Scarlett Cat, writer of the bravely open and honest blog “Scarlett’s BPD Corner” where she talks about living with Bipolar Disorder. Recently she wrote a poem called “Love in the form of words,” it is amazing! If you haven’t been introduced to her before, I highly recommend checking her out.
What is the Liebster Award?
It’s an award in which bloggers nominate other bloggers to show respect for their works and their dedication. It’s an appreciation and recognition for all the fellow bloggers out there in the blogosphere.
Rules for Accepting It:
- Write about it on your blog and thank the person who nominated you, write about their blog too.
- Display the award on your blog.
- Nominate 5 to 10 blogs which you feel deserve it.
- Let the nominees know that you nominated them.
Here are the official rules for the Liebster Award 2018.
Don’t forget to create 10 questions for them to answer. Notify your nominees and provide a link to your post so that they’ll know what to do. Once you’re done, come back here and comment with the link to your post so I can check out your answers.
Questions Scarlett Cat asked:
What is your favorite writer and why?
My first thought when I read this question was, “Do I have to pick one?” I’m sure most writers would initially respond in the same way because all writers love reading too. If I had to choose one though I would choose Mark Twain. I am drawn to his humor, his wit, and the way he chooses how to word a phrase. One of my favorite passages in any book is in “Life on the Mississippi” where Twain describes the river like a book that you can read over and over again and find new meaning in it each time.
What motivates you to write?
I would say I have more of a drive to write rather than a motivation. I will get an idea in my head and it just won’t let me rest until I have it down on paper. And then musing on that idea I get excited about the different directions I can take that idea in. Right now I’m trying to focus on taking ideas in directions that are unexpected and different from what I’ve seen before.
When and why did you begin writing?
The first time I remember writing was when I was around 6 or 7. It was Christmas morning and I had woken up early and had to wait a couple of hours before I was allowed to go downstairs. The time was creeping by, waiting to open my stocking and presents, so I sat down and started writing a story about a girl on Christmas. I don’t remember how it ended but I remember how fast the time flew by once I began working on that story. That was also when I discovered my love of finding ways to put words together in different ways. Even to this day I will start with one phrase and then play with it until I find something that I like.
If you could change 5 things about this world, what would you change?
- I’d make it so people could work 40 hours a week and have more than enough to live on comfortably.
- I’d make sure all the Veterans were taken care of and none of them were homeless or forgotten.
- Develop a way to build affordable housing so everyone could have a place to call home.
- Make education affordable for everyone who wants it.
- Make plastic packages much easier to open than they are now.
If you could change something about yourself, what would it be? It can be physical or psychological.
My depression. The way it lies to me and never shuts up, always whispering in my brain telling me every negative thing it can say. Yes, I’m personifying a condition but that’s how I see it. Like a fat roly-poly little devil sitting on my shoulder.
Do you still watch TV? If so, what do you like to watch?
I do watch a lot of television still. My favorite shows include: Doctor Who, Walking Dead, Criminal Minds, Supernatural, The Crown, Victoria, Survivor, The Amazing Race, The Big Bang Theory, and several others.
If you could live forever in an imaginary world from a book, tv show or movie, which one would you pick?
Without hesitation, I’d pick Doctor Who. I’ve always imagined what it would be like to be able to travel anywhere in time and space. To visit distant worlds and see how they live, their art, literature, social customs, etc. Or to just visit the past or future here on Earth. I think the adventure of it would be such a thrill. Or maybe find a spot and stay for a couple centuries and see how the world changes.
What is your morning routine?
Wake up, turn my alarm off, doze off for a few minutes and then get up. Head downstairs, take care of my mom and my pets: breakfast, walks, cleaning litter boxes, etc. Then I have my breakfast. That’s about it, nothing too exciting, I’m afraid.
If you could revive five deceased people, who would you revive?
1. Mark Twain, I would love to spend a day with him.
2. My oldest sister, we lost her in 2016 and I miss her like crazy.
3. Leonardo Da Vinci just to be in the presence of his genius and to see what he would say about today’s world
4. Heath Ledger, I am aching to see what other roles he would have played during his career.
5. Alexander Hamilton, I would love to see what he thought of the musical about his life.
What are your plans for 2018?
Concentrate on developing my writing and getting my work out into the world. Read some great books. Hang out with my dog. Try to enjoy the world.
My Questions for My Nominees:
- What three words would you choose to describe the most life changing moment you’ve experienced?
- If you could live anywhere in the world for free where would you choose and why?
- If you had to listen to one musical genre for the rest of your life what would it be?
- What is your favorite word?
- Have you ever dreamed about eating and woke up craving that food? If so, what was it?
- What is the weather like where you are today?
- Do you believe in life on other planets, why or why not?
- You find a message in a bottle on the beach, what does it say?
- What is the best food you’ve ever had?
- Which came first the chicken or the egg?
A Fishing Miracle on Squam Lake
Lately, I’ve been thinking more and more to my childhood summers. I doubt it has anything to do with the recent Siberian conditions where I live. Nah, it couldn’t be that. (lol)
Anyway, I’ve mentioned how my family had a vacation house in New Hampshire. Well, during the summers we had a small boat on Squam Lake and we would spend weekends on that boat fishing and swimming. I still remember the first summer my parents decided I was old enough to sit up front with my older brother. Cruising through the channels towards the open lake, we would motor past vacation homes with towels drying on clothes lines and fluttering in the breeze like multi-colored terrycloth flags. Anticipation would build within me as the channel opened up to the wide area of the lake. My dad would gun the motor and we would be off, speeding across the water. Bouncing on every wave it felt like an amusement park ride to me and I loved it. I remember screaming and laughing because it felt like we were going 100 mph, even though I knew it was more like 30 mph, but still pretty fast.
One summer, my brother was able to buy a new fishing pole and he brought it to the lake with him. We had traveled to our favorite cove, with fairly deep water where we could swim to the shore and pick blueberries off the bushes that lined the water’s edge. At some point, early in the day, my brother’s line got stuck and he went to pass the rod to our father. When he reached for it, somehow it slipped and fell into the water. My brother grabbed his diving mask and dove down several times looking for his rod but the water was too murky where we were and he never found it. When we moved to a different spot in the lake, my brother was heartbroken and sat up front sulking. We fished in the new location for a couple of hours before my dad decided to head back to the cove. My brother had been very quiet that whole afternoon and we all left him alone, which wasn’t easy to do given the smallness of the boat. Late that afternoon, when my parents decided it was time to head back, my dad told my brother to pull up the anchor. And then he told him again. My brother didn’t move from his spot until the fourth time my dad told him to get the “God damn” anchor on the boat. I was in the back of the boat when my brother let out what I can only describe as a definite screech. We all turned to see what was going on and my brother was pulling the anchor up as fast as he could and yelling, “My fishing pole!” We didn’t quite comprehend what was going on until he reached over the side of the boat and stood back up holding his fishing pole in his hands. Somehow, it had gotten caught on the anchor line when he threw it in. We couldn’t believe it. We had left the area and come back and couldn’t understand how in the world the line got tangled in the anchor line. I was around 6 or 7 when this happened and I always imagined some kind of underwater fairy had helped my brother get his fishing rod back. Like freshwater mermaids or something like that. I don’t know, all I know is that that day we definitely witnessed some sort of miracle.
I Just Can’t Wait…
This post is brought to you by the cuddly little lion cub we all know and love, Simba! I woke up this morning with the song “I Just Can’t Wait to Be King,” written by Tim Rice with music by Elton John for the animated motion picture “The Lion King” in my head. After the song had gone around eight or nine times I realized why it was there. I’ve been my mother’s caregiver for 12 years now. I’ve been living the life my family expects of me instead of the life I’ve wanted to live. The song characterizes my impatience to live the life that I want. I think many people struggle with these feelings at some point in their lives. Where our daily routines make up a life we really don’t want to be living. I think that’s why the song resonates with so many who hear it. That is the magic of music, it connects people, brings us together through shared experiences and moments in our lives.
The Color of Character Part 5
What’s your stories, Morning Glories? Hope you are all doing well in your neck of the woods. Here’s the fifth character description. She is an extremely popular singer/performer.
She stands on stage before a gathering of her peers resplendent in gold. From the Virgin Mary-like halo orbiting the long blond curls that hang down her back, to the dazzling gold collar circling her neck, she is every inch the self-made Queen. Adorning her body, is a matching mesh gown that is covered with beaded embellishments that create just enough sparkle to send the jaws of the audience dropping but not too over the top. She has spent her career carefully crafting her look and she knows how to work it to perfection. She looks out at the audience and knows every eye is on her and she looks back on them with gratitude.
So, five down two to go, what has been most surprising about this exercise is the difficulty I’ve had deciding who to describe. It sounded easy when I first started but then I start second guessing my ability to describe them effectively. But that’s what exercises do, I guess, push you into doing what you think you can’t do. Until tomorrow….
Color of Character Part 4
Ok ladies and gentlemen, today’s character comes from another popular television show that I may or may not be binge-watching this week.
The sun blazes down on him as he walks down the highway. Stumbling past abandoned cars he is always searching for food. Food that is getting scarcer as the weeks go by. The others with him have the same driving want for food. His exposure to the elements has left his business suit in tatters. One sleeve of his jacket has been missing since the attack. His remaining skin has become multicolored; brown from dirt and shades of green and black from decay. A sudden sound makes him turn his head and as he does his jaw swings freely from the one socket that holds it now. The others turn in the direction and he follows. The need to feed is always there but has ability to eat is gone now. He will remain hungry until the rotting corpse he is trapped in decays into a skeleton.
So, you may have guessed by now that I slant towards the horror/sci-fi genre. It began in childhood when I was flipping through our 5 channels and landed on PBS which was airing a British show called “Doctor Who.” For some reason the show just hooked me in one episode. Tom Baker was playing the fourth doctor at the time and he is still my favorite incarnation of the character. I loved the idea of being able to travel anywhere in time and space and just see what life might be like and the idea of extraterrestrial lifeforms has always interested me as well. I’ve written a few horror short stories and I feel that they have come out pretty well. Once I gain enough confidence in my writing, I’m hoping to submit something horror-ish to see how it is received. I guess we will see what the future brings. Sometimes I wish I had a time machine so I could see what my future held for me. Then again not know is sometimes the best part of the process.
Color of Character Part 3
Today’s description is of the infamous kind.
He looks at the camera waving and smiling with a painted white face, big blue triangles over his eyes, and a big, wide, red mouth. The pointy hat sitting on his round head has several colorful pom-poms on it. The colors of the hat match the large red and white striped clown suit he is wearing. Framing his face are several large red ruffled collars that consume any sign of a neck. In one hand is a bunch of colorful balloons while the other is encased in a clean-looking white glove. There is something about his face though, his eyes. There is something that just seems off about this man. Can anyone see inside this man’s blackened and twisted soul?
So, there you have it, number three of seven descriptions. Comment if you wish to, I’d appreciate it.
The Color of Character Part 2
Ok, day two’s famous person is actually a character from a popular television show.
She looks around nervously, her haunted eyes darting every which way at once. Her shaved head makes her stand out from all the other girls around her and she feels very self-conscious. She pulls at the blue jacket a friend gave her to wear over a pale pink dress that is stained with dirt. She is covered with dirt and mud from her recent adventures and she is hungry. She pulls out a reheated waffle from her pocket and takes a bite.
Well, any guesses? Please feel free to leave a comment.