Feel the Love

I wrote last night on Facebook that I am making a greater effort to Be the Love, Feel the Love and to stay out of complete distress over the current politics. (I take solace in the millions of vocal and marching folks who share my concerns). How have I practiced the love today?

Our town car driver to the airport started denigrating Muslim employees who work there. I said, “Liberty and Justice for ALL, right?” and changed the subject. I practiced patience when he talked us to death, especially when describing what his dog is like when she’s in heat. Ewww.

When we were treated quite poorly by the ticket agent in the terminal, I asked to see a manager and told Pete that I needed to speak my truth – which I did. “We are easy going passengers but we don’t expect to be treated so badly, especially when one of us is a Platinum member”. She apologized but Pete will still push for some miles.

The very, grumpy man in the Laurelwood pub wanted to block my getting a table next to him. “Could you move your suitcase please?” He snarled and moved it 2 inches. “Could you move your jacket as well so I can sit down? Thank you”. I tried to imagine he has some huge fear or recent hurt. I was going to wish him a good day when he left but he grumped loudly and careened off many tables on his way out.

More stories but I’m just about all “loved out” for now and in pain. Our flight has been delayed so many times!! Here we sit. 7K mile flight to go and I’m already restless ­čśČ





Jetzt langt Es.

That’s German for “that’s enough”. Or in current Portland speak, enough with this ice and snow and crazy cold temps already.

Wow – it has been over a year since I last posted. Because I got caught up in the shiny, can’t stay away, sound byte world of Facebook. Aber – jetzt langt Es! I want to write complete sentences – and not keep up with pop news,┬á or learn which baby┬áfigured out how to┬áuse the potty (which would be poop news) or see what people ate for lunch. As gripping as┬áall that is, it’s time I got on with my school program and crafts business.

More on that soon. But for now – it is enough.




Knit A Square

Now that we are past the shortest day of the year, I finally need to post again about hope, opportunities, more daylight (well – it’s been super soggy in Oregon, but July 5th is right around the corner!! ­čÖé

Watch this video and join me if you so desire. I crochet – don’t knit – but here’s to something awesome!! I would adopt every child if I was there where this video was shot.



After 9 days of kidney stones and a bad fall onto a concrete sidewalk, and all this by myself – and after today’s challenges – sometimes life just becomes too much. I’m not one for wanting the spotlight; some people love it.

But after venting and crying and getting it out – things are much better.

Ahhh. Alrighty then. Let’s try this again. Life – at ease, soldier!

How to help someone who is having a super bad day

For lack of a better identifier, I will lump any big upset or transition into a SPD – a super bad day. This may be a new diagnosis, a recent break up, pain or illness, a car accident etc. Our trained inclination is to say 2 or 3 standard phrases. “Are you ok? Let me know if there is something I can do for you. I had the same thing happen a while back”. Please – as kindly as that is intended, don’t ever say those things.

In milder cases, the person doesn’t need you to DO anything. They need your reassurance!! Phrases such as, “I’m thinking of you. I love you. I care about you. I will be here with you through this. Do you want to tell me what happened?”, goes a million miles towards truly supporting the person. By definition, the person is not “ok”.

For more intense situations, especially if the person is sobbing heavily and/or hard to understand – ask specific questions such as, “Are you in danger? Are you in a lot of pain? Are you bleeding? Do you just need someone to listen right now?”. They will let you know. If they seem confused or don’t know what they need – see the next paragraph.

Let’s talk about SHOCK, FEAR AND PAIN. People become disoriented and often cannot make decisions. They may need some guidance. “Do you need me to drive you to the ER? Is your car out of the road?”. Concrete questions are good.

Know that everyone handles shock, fear and pain differently. Some people become stoic. Some joke. Some are very confused. Some lash out. Their response is NOT ABOUT YOU!!!! It is about them and their descent into an altered state that is scary and confusing.

Do not take it personally if the person rejects your help. When they are more settled, offer concrete things. “I’m happy to sit with you. I can bring you some groceries. I can wait with you for the tow truck”. MOST often, people need reassurance and company.

Lastly, as tempting as it is to find common ground – and I’ve been guilty of this even knowing better by having been on the other side – do NOT bring up your situation. The person with the SPD can barely keep it together themselves. It really doesn’t help, in the crisis moment, to hear you went through the same thing. Maybe down the road they might want to hear about your accident, miscarriage, chemo etc. Now is NOT the time.

And above all – even if you stumble all over yourself and say every wrong thing in the book – presence by a genuinely┬ácaring person beats isolation ANY day of the week. So many people have disappeared during my worst times because they didn’t know what to say or they didn’t want to remind me, for example,┬áthat my brother was gone. Just “I care” solves all that. No clever words needed. And trust me – no one forgets that they’ve lost a loved one, or that they have cancer, or that they are suddenly single. It is ALL consuming at times.

Remember the Golden Rule and you can’t go wrong.

Provisions for my Super Bad Week!!!

Provisions for my Super Bad Week!!!

Cat Scanned

Got my “cat scanned”┬á (CT scan) just a while ago. It’s a mixed blessing when one of the techs in the hospital imaging dept. recognized me from all my trips to see him in the past.

One of the male techs (I had 3 of them) asked if I was wearing an underwire bra. It interferes with the imaging and frankly, so many things in life. “Not any more”, as I took it off with my shirt still on and flung it aside. Don’t expect modesty and proper protocol from a former massage school student. ­čÖé

Now I wait. If I have to do this alone, at least it’s not the “scream your head off and hope to keel over” kind of pain. But those kind tend to move faster. Mine is more “let’s keep poking you and making you feel nauseous as we enjoy this slow drive through the countryside”. Whee.

Addendum: Scan came back clear although the report talked about my right flank (thanks for making me sound like a race horse ­čÖé even though┬áthe stone(s) were on the LEFT side. Right, left, what’s the difference? As I started feeling crazy for having made all this up, the doc assured me there was a positive “dip test” that I could not have faked. And Houston – we have “gravel”. The last time I had this kind of pain, I got a 9 lb baby out of it. ­čÖé

Hopefully, all this is over and I can get on with life.

Breakfast of Champions

For breakfast, I had chocolate, coffee and my prostate medication.


I’m about a week into a possible kidney stone, and keeping my prostate happy is part of the medical regimen. Before juicy rumors start, it’s standard protocol to help a person┬ávisit the┬árestroom┬ámore often. Well, drinking water usually works, but hey – whatever helps.

The pain alternates from “I must be making this up” to “Find me my friggin vicodin right NOW”. Funny I should put that in quotes because there is no one to utter such lovely things to. Teresa was here for a few days (and so helpful – it’s wonderful what just having company does for a person). Pete is out of the country. I think his leaving the country is like trailer parks causing tornadoes. ­čÖé

So I wait – and I drink water – and I eat crap because I feel like crap. I’m in a holding pattern waiting for the CT scan to get approved. The CT is waiting for a CT scan. My terpy friends will understand that.

Have a groovy day y’all.

Love, The Kidney Stoner

(This too shall pass – ar ar ar)