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    • CommentTimeMay 1st 2017 edited
    Many years ago I read a short story by a well-known writer, sorry I can’t remember who it was, and I’ve searched Kafka and Goethe with no luck. Proust? The gist was this:
    A man was lying on a hill enjoying the sunshine. He was minding his own business and at peace with himself and the world. Along came a mischief-maker, who bowled right into him and knocked him to the ground. Exit the mischief-maker, looking back and laughing at the hurt he had caused.
    It was explained to me that the story was an illustration of an unhappy person that felt compelled to upset anyone who seemed happier in comparison.
    Anther comment from personal observation of a close family member: Some people crave attention and will do and say outrageous things to get that attention. I've found that the best thing — unless someone else is being hurt — is to ignore them. In other words, don’t reward bad behaviour.
    This has happened before on the Alzheimer Spouse site. In one instance that I remember, the drama queen returned under a different name, but the tone and style were recognizable. I think Joan had to step in and put a stop to it. Until she did, it caused a lot of upset to many people.
    Guess it is rather evident that I have a few buttons and several got pushed. Funny how that happens. A few words. An interpretation. A visceral reaction. An emotional flight or flight response. A Tempest in a Teapot.

    The good of it all is that we people of words (wish there were a word for that state of being) revealed a bit more of who we really are and what makes us unique.

    Thank you all for your lucid responses and kind words. It was really Much Ado About Nothing. That is until the next rant pops up. With any luck I will be engaged in the seasonal war against thistles and miss it.
    • CommentAuthorWolf
    • CommentTimeMay 2nd 2017
    Does being carefree mean you're free of care? Is a psychopath carefree then?

    My 'best friend' dumped me. For the third time in our lives (I met this jerk 5 years after I married Dianne), he has dumped me and this time because I refused to drive down the road 8 minutes to meet him for a coffee at the highway. My other friend told me last week that's mostly why. Refusing to drive up the 8 minutes to have coffee here was completely reasonable, my doing exactly the same thing was unforgivable. This is the strange person who is on his third psychiatrist because he tried to prove he was smarter than his boss - to his boss. Guess what happened?

    I'm thinking of moving to Phoenix and starting a rehabilitation center. I would charge a lot of money to stay just a few days like those celeb dry out tanks except this one is for worn out Harlequin writers. You know, the Playboy magazine for women. Vacation banana hammock reading. I would hold lectures where I run through almost endless scenes because I can't tie a narrative together to save my life but I can pump out characters and scenes that happen to them until the cows have long come home and retired.

    Pulp Fiction is the only major motion picture I've seen that dispensed with the over torqued story arc that doesn't exist anywhere in reality. They didn't do the step out and step back with explanations so it's all safely unreal again. Once upon a time they lived happily ever after. Once the heat and the chase died down the book ended. All the things were closed out and tied together just like real life almost never does with it's loose ends dangling out - well, pretty much all over the place.

    "I only use sea salt" says the cook because no human being can tell. "Would you like piles of freshly cracked peppercorn on your gourmet dish?" ask the waiters to see who is there for show. It brings out the flavor. Bull. It overwhelms everything remotely subtle in the cherry demiglaze with duck flambe delicately nestled in a sea of pretence. "More peppercorn?"

    Who knows what evil lurks in the heart of man? Who cares? Evil is boring. Evil apparently hurts, tortures, and kills. Over and over and over like a crook who can't hold down a job but robs convenience stores at least weekly for the $240 average take. Evil is so repetitively, mind numbingly predictable that I would rather rob convenience stores. I'm going to rip your flesh and fill you with fear. What??? Again??? Evil is a one trick pony as nausiating as post nasal drip - whatever that is; I've authorized myself not to care.

    Those friends that give me a passing thought are worried about me. Not like they did a few years ago but there are no visible signs of me 'moving forward'. That's true, but let me tell you about moving forward. I would never make it to the bathroom or to any other room if I didn't move forward. I've never depended on the kindness of strangers. Instead I like to notice where a heavy object is in case I have to start hitting them with it. I don't even trust me. I can flash between victim, doomed, invincible, and empathetic as fast as neurons can go. I notice the same garbage that's in me is the same garbage that's going on in pretty much everybody.

    I never thought anybody should be helping me. I never thought i'd been singled out or punished. I never thought there was a purpose or meaning. I did feel and think like a victim though. I did get pushed past my limits to cope. I did have to go back and put my hand on the hot stove again and again until my nerves got so jangled and abused my feelings and my awareness of my feelings left town. I was repeatedly brought to my knees in every way you can do down on your knees. Wailing, begging, sobbing, slobbering, and even because I had passed out from exhaustion. Get up!!!! Put your hands back on the hot stove!!!!! What year is this again??

    Even my friend who has phoned constantly bless him, worries about my lack of 'moving forward'. He can't tell what he's hearing and I'm not surprised. He's a person dominated by preconceptions. Also he doesn't notice much if it's outside the preconceptions. Very smart man but doesn't even see the things he's not open to. That's fine.

    Two people are walking through a mall. One says did you see that clown and the other says what clown. That's how it is. If my mind is elsewhere I'm still where I am - it's just that it doesn't matter as much.

    Listen. I once worked for this man. We both drove downtown on the same route. One morning I passed him and pulled in front of him waving. Then I changed lanes and let him pass me on my left. Then I drifted behind him and went all the way around him again. He never noticed me.
    • CommentAuthorWolf
    • CommentTimeMay 2nd 2017

    My sister forgets too. She notices too. The difference there is my sister will plug back in and deal with it. My friend will look at you wondering what you're talking about. He phones me regularly though and we have a lot of water under the bridge, so...

    And me? I've been busy changing. I can take any subject and slice it up into three year snapshots and every snapshot is a story and a place by itself. Now I wonder what I will do with the house, last year I was coming around to understanding we both worked for it but now it was my house, two years ago I didn't notice that there was a house, three years ago Dianne and I owned the house together.

    Today I'm not sure what I'll end up doing about another woman. Last year I realized there are a lot of fine women out there but I wasn't willing. Two years ago the thought of some stranger invading my space was outrageous. Three years ago I was married.

    Today I'm not a happy man and I am in an empty life. Neither is shocking because I've been busy elsewhere. My life and my future are up to me. I know that, I feel that, I believe that, and everything shows me that's true. I don't hate people anymore and I don't feel like their victim - but I do look around for that heavy object in case I need it. I'm not overly sorry that Dianne had her life. I'm largely over her because it's all in the past and feels what I'll call Ok. The truth is neither Alzheimer's nor Dianne nor my old life are seen and felt the way they once were. I can do the three year thing there too.

    It doesn't matter what I say. It matters what proves out. It's the tomorrows that validate that what I'm thinking is either somewhere on target or trash that should be dumped at the side of the road. Hold your horses. It takes time to prove things out. We don't envision being a jazz pianist and fail if we're not that next year. You've got to work for most things and every thing has it's own timeline.

    Today I know that if I'm ever going to feel engaged in my life, I have to stop avoiding it and get my sorry and boring behind to make actual efforts. Last year I was busy orgasming because I could feel the heavy dread starting to lift and the gnawing fear leaving. Two years ago I was in the throes of everything at once like Tourettes syndrome at a St Vitus dance. Three years ago I was an empty shell watching over the empty shell Dianne had become.

    Not poor Dianne. Rich Dianne. Not poor Wolf hoping to make it and hoping someone saves him. Just Wolf who doesn't have any answers yet on a subject that is just beginning to come up because you can send a beat up bag of dirt with half the stuffing knocked out as a person into the arena if you want to. I would never do that which is exactly why I didn't.

    Yesterday morning I felt the bone deep truth that I'm not going to make it. I'm not supposed to be alone and I'm never going to trust remotely like that again. I'd be a liar if I said I was willing to give what I need to receive. I have no concept of my future. What's new these days is the bedrock me is here enough and I'm not put out that I have to figure this out for myself by myself. I have range. I have range I never dreamed of or wanted but there it is in my driveway.

    My abused scrawny cat is now fat and demanding. There. A story arc.
    • CommentAuthorcassie*
    • CommentTimeMay 2nd 2017
    Wolf, you have already made it, don't despair. I am your friend as are many others here and we love you.
    There will be no "dumping" of you done here.
    As you said, if you are still not standing in the same spot then you are moving forward.
    Thank you for caring about damaged animals.
    For some light relief, look up Edward Lears' "the owl & the pussycat" and re-read it, it will make you smile.
    • CommentAuthormyrtle*
    • CommentTimeMay 2nd 2017
    Dear Wolf, You are going to make it. In the three years that I've been on here I have seen you go from agony to despair to hope to strength. Please hang in there. And don't let your hapless friend drag you down. I remember your telling us about his self-inflicted wounds. l have no doubt you'll find him on your doorstep again. Speaking of doorsteps (or "front stoops," as old-timers sometimes call them here), I am trying to figure out if I should stop saying "our house" and start saying "my house." I don't like the sound of the singular form.
    • CommentAuthormyrtle*
    • CommentTimeMay 2nd 2017 edited
    Dear marche, As is obvious from the preceding, I have a lot of buttons that can be pushed, too, especially the one that tells me I must have done something wrong. Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa.

    Time to take the patio furniture out of the shed and decide where to write those lines that begin with, "Sweet are the uses of adversity . . ." Good luck with those thistles.
    "Sweet are the uses of adversity. . . " The entire passage is a pearl of wisdom for us. Thistles are the epitome of tenacity, beauty, ugliness, pain, and reproduction at its finest. I have Round-up on my side and they have epochs of fine tuned mutations to ultimately win (they have time on their side too). It is a temporary stand-off. And I feel badly for the finches who feast on the thistles - I have killed their food source for no good reason that they can discern. The fecundity of the thistles insure that my neighbors' meadows, the roadside and the ditch will be full of thistles, so the birds hold no grudge and just move on. A lesson for us there, too.
    Wolf, you don't need to worry about "making it", whatever that means. If it matters, I think you "made it" a long time ago. You don't have anything to prove...and the future can take care of itself. No need to have a "concept" of what it should be. Just enjoy the moments and don't beat yourself up.
    • CommentAuthorcassie*
    • CommentTimeMay 3rd 2017
    Good Morning Wolf, I checked to see if you had signed in today and was pleased that you had.
    Hope that you will "write a few words" again, when you are ready.
    • CommentAuthorWolf
    • CommentTimeMay 3rd 2017
    It's still all by effort. I know what Myrtle said is true. I have come around that route and it's three things I have more of: strength as Myrtle said, a reality where a lot of the old and serious things don't feel like a threat, and I feel more like the self I'm long familiar with.

    I couldn't tell you how much is the grip of years of seeing things in terms of survival. I couldn't tell you how much is holdover depression and anxiety or some other thing like refusal to trust or denial of the right to feel happy. I couldn't tell you how much might be a soured outlook that goes beyond what I'm aware of. I know some of it is that I was hurt close to the limits. Finally, I don't know how much is my up-to-this-minute inability to envision something meaningful for myself.

    In the last post I said several times that I'm just arriving into a zone where I have enough calm that I can believe in pushing myself to work now at figuring something out. I said that to me because I have to keep reminding myself.

    I suspect there are changes in me that I haven't discovered yet. I've been noticing for months now that even though all evidence supports that I'm getting better in every way that means something, I keep feeling worse. I've said I can tell I have more feelings and maybe I feel my losses more keenly with those feelings - but, the truth is I don't know that.

    I'm certain I've repressed things. I obviously don't know what they might be. It might be that I've had a grip of determination that wants to keep helping me but I've run out of real and legitimate struggles. Instead my grip of determination may be stuck on my outer limits as a human being so far.

    For some ways the journey seems more like 'back to', what is something more normal feeling I suppose. At some point you are back to yourself and, suddenly and unnoticed, the journey is to change outward and grow towards new things. I went to the cupboard to see what I had I could use to do that with and - I've checked often - the cupboard is bare.

    Even if I never make it, I'm also never going to give up. I have no use for despair except as a scene where it washes over me and I howl at the moon and then I get up again. This isn't like that. Listen, I walked for years in a forest where every rustle of every leaf whispered "you're not going to make it". It was on the side of the yellow cabs in my dreams like an advertisement. It's what the Greek chorus chanted offstage into the windmills of my mind.

    I think there are complicated things going on. I resisted feelings about Dianne even though they say not to. It would have been releasing Hoover Dam while standing down there in front of it. I cried but I mostly channeled everything into keeping myself going and trying to break down what I could. I did a good job on guilt. Both or neither was my final ruling and nobody goes there anymore because they get a megaphone in the ear the announces "both or neither" and I nod and go elsewhere.

    What I mean by Hoover Dam is how much I miss her; I mean letting my true and deep feelings pour out; I mean looking at the gaping holes ripped out of me where the wind is going to be howling through until I finish my last breath. You live with some things and this I will be living with unchanged. It was never built in the rhealm of reality and it cannot be repaired by that - or in fact touched by reality in any way. That's how that is.

    I have paid a heavy price in pain. Alzheimer's tricked us early and I had to come back to help her. I had to invalidate my anger while taking on the yoke. I had to watch. I always hated the Sophie's Choice scene. I wasn't even given that. Watch me torture her while you are helpless Al Zheimer hissed and it did and it did and it did. I watched him evaporate finally with glee. Regardless, whatever I face and have faced - I pay it freely.

    There are no contentions between me and Dianne. There is an ocean of pain but it is well earned and it is the price. I feel peace with her. No. I'll go further. I would like to hear what judgement any might have of us when we have none of ourselves. It was fabulous. There. It's judged.
    • CommentAuthorWolf
    • CommentTimeMay 3rd 2017

    I can pass the rest of my days in decent amusement. I'm almost never bored. But I don't know if I'll ever feel like I'm truly in the saddle again. I don't know if I can make it there largely because I don't understand whats really going on right now inside of me, but even more importantly, I have no real idea what I'm talking about. It's a little scary really, and it's been true for almost 63 years now.

    I really did 'arrive' at 3 1/2 throwing up on a boat in the middle of the Atlantic while my mother hung on to me. "Oh great" I thought. Nothing much has changed really unless you count the amazing life I had in between and the rich orchestra of things I get to play with now. "Hello dickhead" Walter Mathau says in his pajamas walking by to get the paper. Catch 22 means asking for a discharge from the army because you're crazy proves that you're not. "Miles to go" the falling snow said. "I didn't see, I only heard" sang the crows on the line in Dumbo. The Winter of Discontent written by Shakespeare Steinbeck where somebody thinks about killing a magpie or was that a mocking bird which wasn't the last pigeon or the last dodo laid at the heal of man. It was a hard rain although a hose would have been better. Imagine in Romeo & Juliet if the thirteen year old with raging hormones had been hosed down with cold water instead. Nevermind.

    Who was I again?
    Wolf, I would just take it one day at a time and not drive yourself crazy. Enjoy the moments. I think that as the days and weeks go by--and the months and years--that the path ahead of us becomes more clear with time. It isn't going to be the same life--and we are not the same people as we were in times gone by with our loved ones--but it can be a life with a lot of good things for us.
    • CommentAuthorWolf
    • CommentTimeMay 5th 2017 edited
    Love isn't blind. It just doesn't need reasons. "She said yes." Words I understand.

    I've never warned anyone before reading my post but I do warn you now. I always review everything carefully and have done so here, but I'm going into the center of the ineffable moments of love and in my opinion the pain that comes with it is beautiful to feel. If you watch you're going to cry.

    Today everyone puts things up on videos. They think nothing of sharing their moments or of using their own abilities in expressing themselves. The young still fall in love. They still get married. They still propose to marry and that moment still comes regardless of how long they have lived together already.

    I cried and cried and the tears streamed down and they streamed down again. I wish them all well. Thank you for sharing those moments with me and letting me feel them.

    1. A woman is travelling to be with her boyfriend who has made a movie about them in which he sings and plays the music. In the video are all the family she knows who are passing something unseen from one to the other. At the end of video we all watch together, he shows her what it is they were all passing.

    2. Some friends are together playing pictionary and of course they're taping where nobody under 40 even thinks about being recorded because it happens all the time. Watch her face when she looks at him and watch his face telling her he's serious.

    3. In the kitchen. I'm so old she seems like a child but she's not and those are real feelings spilling out everywhere. OMG is really what they all say these days. I hope he's got a lot of energy because he's going to be using it.

    4. I love this one. She's watching the video he made for her while she's being video'd herself. She's the smart one. The video takes a while to get through but when he's on his knees opening his soul in a few short sentences, it all felt worth it. That's a dog breathing you're hearing by the way.

    5. I love this one too. A Christmas Story is playing in the background. We're all just opening presents. By the second box she looks a little more closely. He's fussing over it and she knows it's something. Just before he flips the lid up look at her face and see how much we want to believe. I love the lady with the gravelly voice wanting her box back.

    6. And the last one. An early morning news anchor (in I'm guessing north central Dayton to Albany kind of range), the sales manager has the ability to set things up (and go on a bit too long) so that he can propose to what I'm assuming was on the QT although I don't know if people care about that anymore. "Did you guys see this?" she beams and gets a hug from the guy with warmth and a ships in the night bump from the other guy. The video loops through that scene a few times although few people hang around this video long enough to find that out because they re-learned how boring people actually are in the meantime. Hey, we wish you luck. Stop talking so much.

    It was the best of times when we were younger and we asked or were asked to spend our lives together and we said yes. That was a great day. One of the best days in most people's lives.

    This is a pretty good day too. I went looking for my emotions. I found them.

    EDIT - I'm going add one more. This one is all about books and covers. He looks unimpressive in his baseball cap and she is somewhat overdone in her anorexic and peculiar ways. It must be gluten free and the hours must be documented and what not. She doesn't get along great with the MIL who is doing the video taping where there are a number of minor jabs back and forth. They already have their coping mechanisms in place. He tells her to get up but she hits him on the head.

    Not much of an introduction but I wish I'd seen this before because I would have made this number 6 instead.

    People either watched these or they didn't, but I'm glad I did. I can feel the emotions and cry with them and be happy for them. I've come a long way.
    • CommentAuthorcassie*
    • CommentTimeMay 6th 2017
    You really have come a long way, Wolf and it has been a wild ride on your particular road.
    My computer crashes (old one) when I watch videos so that is why I haven't watched the above, not through lack of interest in your post.
    When are you going to write a book?
    • CommentAuthorWolf
    • CommentTimeMay 8th 2017
    Hi Cassie, sorry you couldn't get them. I only picked ones I was certain were real and in all of them one minute life is ordinary and the next everyone's emotional and hugging. I only picked one's where they said yes. There are also videos where they say no. I asked myself why I seemed to have no emotions about anything and I found a way to show myself that - no, my emotions are right here. I should have known that because I use them to feel lonely with.

    Mary is one of the writers here. She's just finishing her third book in about three years. I can write but I have no skill in being an author and I don't pretend to. However, it is one of the activities I plan to pursue. I've actually been busy up to this point. I lived a busy life, I went through our disease together, and I've largely staggered out. I was so busy I've been retired for 13 years now and I've hardly spent any time even being aware of that. Now at 66 that finally feels like it's tangibly before me.

    I'm just asking this question now in this post for the first time because it's just occurred to me. What is it I think a decent retired life is like? The answer is I think you put your feet up a lot and contemplate your life and do some things that seem good to do. And as it has been in all things, it's 40% what is there and 60% how I see what is there.

    How to relax and enjoy accelerating decrepitude.

    There's a title of a book I might like to write. Right after I finish researching it. In it I would ask deep probing questions like "when did you first understand life is temporary?". In it I would explain the difference between not being able to deal with that and a drama queen. I would explain why I know many people loath themselves or are extra hard on themselves and then I would explain what sado masochism is. Those that resist are given an assignment of writing an essay explaining why they are uniquely singled out for special treatment either way. Anyone who answers "because I want to" gets top marks and gets to stop reading. Everyone else gets it explained to them why they definitely have a serious problem with the planet they're here on.

    Then there would be some historical chapters with annotations and footnotes showing that in stories they're probably at least vaguely familiar with, just how much perception drove the events that occurred. Within that I would be showing how outrageous without bounds the perceptions that people develop of themselves become.

    Having convinced readers they're nice and sane I would introduce chapters about why they're boring and how to entertain a troll with a piece of string. Other chapters would cover how a miserable outlook is actually self empowerment and how belief and self empowerment are siamese twins. Other helpful chapters would help I'm sure but I've probably beaten this into the ground already.
    I want to read this book! NOW!! Send me the chapters as soon as you pound them out (Do you still have a vintage typewriter?). I will proofread. No, wait. . . someone else around here did proofreading.

    Start with the explanation of the difference between not being able to deal with "life is temporary" and a drama queen. I'm intrigued. This needs explaining.

    As for perception. Everything we "know" are electrical impulses transmitted from our five senses and numerous sensory modalities to the network of neurons in our brain where this information is stored away for further reference. So all perception comes by way of the senses. And (IMO) it is more subjective than objective. I want to hear what you have to say about perception.

    Waiting here . . . with bated (not baited) breath.
    • CommentAuthorWolf
    • CommentTimeMay 11th 2017
    I just got here. I have no hesitation to trust you with proofreading. You have good grasp and you'll be honest. Unfortunately that was off the cuff and has been given the the time it took to say those things about writing a book. I'll do something on the difference between viewing our temporary existence and a drama queen. In the meantime I'll start right now on some ideas about perception. I once had an old Remington that weighed about 40 lbs and clanked around so hard when you hit the return lever, stuff moved around on the desk. I can't even remember what happened to it. I type on a full keyboard usually into Wordpad. I have thousands of things I've written and I've never gone back and read a single thing. It's never been where I went, it's where I'm going now. Ok. So. Perception, I'm answering.
    • CommentAuthorWolf
    • CommentTimeMay 11th 2017
    Perception of perception

    Life happens on a Hippo campus. It's what you said about our senses and storage and retrieval. The original data that is. The actual thing that you saw that moment with sound and some weather data are recorded including details you may not have consciously noticed at the time but do realize later. Along with any direct data from the five senses is at least a sixth element which is our personal experience of the same moment. If we remember the moment there is now a seventh element which is that we pulled out the memory of the moment our ice cream cone flopped onto the hot sand on the beach and had further thoughts about it. We may have felt really stupid that we let that happen at that moment but now come back to it and declare it one of those things that happens and just a waste of perfectly good ice cream. We might remember now that Nancy laughed and Frank ordered another one.

    It was a jarring thing that happened with an OMG moment where we saw the ice cream going (cue visual) which made the hippocampus stick it in the potential threat/unresolved issue compartment. "Is this something?" we ask ourselves and judge that it isn't and some time after the hippocampus will remove that issue from the potential threat/unresolved issue compartment and connect that information (resolved as not important) to the originals and the review and call that issue done and now in long term memory. Two years later we're at the beach again and a child drops their ice cream off the cone into the hot sand and our memory touches our own ice cream falling two years ago like a car driving by. Then Nancy laughs because she's here again where the child has just lost their ice cream and we notice having just remembered that Nancy seems to laugh like that at other people's misfortunes. We haven't been abused yet so we ignore that as a quirk in a person we completely trust as a very close friend under any circumstances like family. (hee-hee-hee)

    Reality is objective. Perception of reality is subjective. This drives philosophers crazy. You cannot perceive reality except through your own experience of it because you are a living human being who only has access to what you are aware of - not how much serotonin you're making at this second or how filament 1169442041 in your upper intestine is working right now. You ARE doing millions of things a second but you're not aware of it so it's not 'real'.

    Instead, if we don't care about spiders we may not notice the huge spiderweb on the arbor with the fairly large spider on it waving around in the slight breeze. If we hate spiders there are red alarm bells going off "DANGER DANGER DANGER" and the arbor becomes an evil source of threat. Unless we never did notice that spider even though we HATE spiders and so that memory (read input) is about the nice red roses Nancy was gushing about.
    • CommentAuthorWolf
    • CommentTimeMay 11th 2017 edited

    There is no such thing as objective memory of reality. There is only objective memory of personal objectives. One minute you look around at your reality you have known a long time and the next minute some punk breaks in and steals your wallet while you're asleep in the house and you never see the reality around you the same again. In actual reality it's just a punk who's been doing this for years in your reality and nothing has changed. Try telling that to the person who 'knows' it has.

    Lets be clear. I'm not talking about our emotional reactions to being robbed. I'm talking about the decisions we made about reality because of our experience. At the moment we do that our poor hippocampus has all these valid files that say 'my neighborhood is safe' and now has urgently stressful input that 'my neighborhood is NOT safe'. Resolve and update long term memory please. Keep open until that is done.

    The problem with accurate perception is that our brain works for us. More than we have the tiniest inkling of, our brain has one job. Manage our continuance. In a way that no dog can copy, our brain is fully invested in making us 'better'. Did you ever have a memory of something and it made you stop and think about it or react in some way? You probably think you randomly tripped over that neuron walking through the windmills of your mind; but you would be wrong. That memory is an outstanding issue in the part of the brain that works with the owner to resolve. It even works on ways to come up with resolutions on it's own while the owner spends time thinking about aches and pains.

    The thing is that what we think of as us only works in a conscious state. What we think of as ourselves is only in one place at any single time. The conscious human can only be in one place at any one time consciously. Our soul must be consciously in the moment at the one place to be 'here'. We can change topics rather quickly and skip back and forth or have five considerations at once; but, we can only visit them each one at a time to be 'there'.

    The soul is the conscious awareness of our own existence. It must be so. If we were not aware of ourselves we would not be conscious and therefore be indistinguishable from robots. To have a soul we must be consciously aware that we have one, or again, we are just existing the way a rock in space does. Descartes said "I think, therefore I am", which is true but not the droids he was looking for. You must be before you can think you are or be aware that you're thinking. The information is in "I am, therefore I think".

    Humans do not perceive prima facia reality. Humans perceive themselves in reality and cannot do otherwise because all the machinery they have does that and they have no machinery to do anything they're not directly involved in. The ghost in the machine Arthur Koestler talked about is that.

    The hippocampus does other things too. It deals with emotions for one thing. So even while it (we) is asking us how we want to resolve the thing we have unresolved feelings about, it regulates the current way we do feel about that issue and retains our history of episodes so far with that issue. It even knows the current threat level the conscious soul holds that issue in and works with that to try to find ways to resolve the issue. There is an actual and physical process by which all of these things happen. It is not magic. It isn't even wonderous design because that's a soul talking. It's how it works in real life and THAT IS direct reality.

    So. There are two realities perfectly reflective of the idea of combining a soul with it's earthly temple. There is the machinery of your physical body and there is the conscious experience of the soul - both housed in and hopefully getting along with each other living in the same house both in charge.
    • CommentAuthorWolf
    • CommentTimeMay 11th 2017 edited

    Perception can only ever be our perception of ourselves in our bodies at this time and in this place. That is our personal experience and therefore our reality.

    The extent to which we create that and give it power can be illustrated in our belief in God and the importance of that versus our non belief in other gods and the lack of importance in that. It can also be illustrated in our belief that what we do is fair and reasonable while what others do is outrageous. On the same day that the west was in Iraq freedom fighting, the Russians were outrageously interfering with Ukraine. Howling outrage from each party but only about the other.

    The extent to which we create our own beliefs and to which our beliefs dictate how we perceive reality is absolute because it's all one and the same thing. What prevents us from having wonderfully working programs of learning how to change our belief about something we desire to change - is our deeply rooted need to not have to think about any of this and just be ourselves - forever. We transfer all that to our religion but our religion returns the serve that judgement comes from what we believe.

    Our reality is what we believe it is and that drives our perception. If we believe we are oppressed then we perceive that. If we believe we are fortunate then we perceive reality that way. UFO's are like this. High school physics proves it would take a massive investment to send a can of beans here from the nearest star. Never mind juvenile aliens who seem to mostly anally probe lonely people in rural areas. Somewhere in England a UFOer was holding a loud vigil outside the town's underground reservoir believing it to be a secret alien base. So the town council opened it up to him and the media and toured him through every dank corner. The next week he was back. "They're in on it" he said.

    Changing our nature is not an easy task although an epiphany can do it in an instant. Changing our perception is something we do all our lives in fundamental and thorough ways. Humans say "I used to think this but now I think this" all the time. They say they understand their children's comments about their grandchildren because they had to transform from lovely young thing to diaper changing mama who puts up with the backtalk for the greater good.

    Can we change our perception and our beliefs and our outlook? Sure. The soul has to believe the new thing and see through that prism. That can take a moment or many tries but the change is really a reset in perception. Once the Hippo campus sees that's actually true, it starts the work of aligning the neurons THIS way. That can take some time. Actually, you might want to bring a good book while you answer the thousand questions with your sparkly new belief. Unless it's a hand puppet. Then the Hippo campus won't do anything because as I explained it runs everything including what you think of as you inside you. The soul is no where to be found but it causes no end of tribble - while the Hippo always knows because that's what it does.

    btw - filament 1169442041 in your upper intestine was not harmed in any way in the making of this post
    Reading and thinking about this very good post. You have an amazing grasp of neurophysiology and neuropsychology. How ironic that the hippocampus does all of these amazing functions to integrate our senses, body, and soul and it is the part of the brain decimated by AD.

    I will eventually comment on the rest after more reflection. "That thar's a darn meaty post." But the drama queen. Where does she fir into all of this?
    • CommentAuthorWolf
    • CommentTimeMay 13th 2017
    I've been wondering what a drama queen actually is. We know the melodrama type but I think there are a variety of forms of that. What is a person who doesn't think about what they're doing to others and only sees their own needs and if they don't get their way they make a big fuss? When something serious is happening some people react by panicking and making strange loud noises. Is that being a drama queen? Some people get put out and become quite uncomfortable when you talk about getting old and dying. That's the drama queen context I used.

    Around me there were half a dozen people that loved Dianne and were close to her but it hurt them so much that this was happening they had to protect themselves by ignoring her. They explained this to my face because it was justified for them. Far fewer people indulge themselves like that with cancer. I watched that twice. Friends who were avoiding us still phoned to share being supportive of the cancer victims without the slightest awareness of the duplicity because cancer was within their realm but dementia was not. Most of these friends have opened back up to me once that evil was gone and can't see that. It takes drama queen mentality to pull those things off.

    What about a person who can't admit they're wrong but has no trouble pointing out other things that are wrong? What about a person who gets upset when things aren't done their way? What about practical jokers? They are notoriously thin skinned when anyone pulls a joke on them. Aren't all of those forms of drama queen behaviour?

    Getting older is scary. There's no way to turn that into something good and there's no way to avoid it and that should be scary. I don't think people should be staring at it. I happen to have two people who talk about it and so we get to share our feelings and joke about it and throw up our hands about it together. I live in a world where these are the best days in terms of physical mobility and cognitive ability and energy to do things. It takes some bravery to cope within that, I don't care what anybody says about that because it's true.

    I'm a drama queen. I've played in some big productions and had juicy parts. Even now I find time each day to stick needles into the effigy of what used to be my best friend. I never consider the things I did and said that contributed because that gets in the way. Instead I get to try to pull Wolf away from the phantom opera he always goes back to. My friend is a drama queen too. We agree that the other is completely responsible but I still find myself back there kicking and swinging at nothing. I have tons of experience with that because I let go of things so well.

    I'm entering my drama queen period in a new way. I haven't anything but the slightest excuse for not getting physically engaged with the things all around me. That's true sometime around here and when I feel myself in that outlook I earned so hard and know so well, I also roll my eyes that I can't seem to let go of a thing that isn't there anymore but seems to be all I know how to do still.

    Alzheimer's and Dianne are historic memories in the same way as losing loved ones in The Alamo was. Neither has been here for years. That is a truth without drama queens. That is a truth that makes all my voices go silent. When I think about her in real ways then I feel the fabric of all of me is together. I can still think about her in the same way I did when she was alive. That finely honed skill I spent 46 years learning did not disappear. It's part of why our feelings about them are usually so deep for so long. When we go there we are fully ourselves and in no small part because of our genuine respect.

    My outlook comes from my own ideas about what to respect. Dianne isn't part of that because what we made together transcends normal life activity meaning. The respect I'm talking about now is to the fact of my life. I have no formal religion but I have an intimate concern about spirituality. I don't need a religion to know right from wrong which is an entirely spiritual activity because it's judging the properness of things.

    I judge that life is precious to those who have it and I'm certain everyone would agree with that after they're dead. I judge that I'm entitled to my time and anything I can get is up to me and luck. I judge that I'm on a life and death mission to relax more, have some fun, and enjoy more of my life. Just as soon as I get over myself. I wouldn't bother waiting. Now, if you'll excuse me, I have some pins I need to stick into this voodoo effigy of a drama queen.
    • CommentTimeMay 13th 2017
    Wolf, here is a story (not word for word) from a shipping website that I belong to for research purposes. A crew member hated his First Mate and made an effigy of said Mate. The seaman began to stick pins into the effigy’s leg. A few days later, the Mate broke his leg. The seaman panicked and threw the effigy into the ocean. He spent the rest of the trip in a highly nervous state.
    • CommentAuthormyrtle*
    • CommentTimeMay 13th 2017 edited
    Well, the theatre seems to be my grief therapy, whether I like it or not. My husband's sister and her husband invited me to dinner at their house and then a play, "Bedtime Stories," at a community college. It was OK. A little more amateur than the other two plays I attended. A young man seated in the row behind us had a bunch of grocery store flowers. I asked him if they were for one of the actors. He said yes, his girlfriend was In the cast. So sweet.

    In the last two months, I have attended more plays than I have in the last 10 years. I had no idea there were so many community theatre companies. On the way home, I went the wrong way on the interstate and only realized it when I saw I was in Connecticut. This is the third time I have done this in the last two months. I usually have a good sense of direction but not any more, I guess.
    • CommentAuthorWolf
    • CommentTimeMay 14th 2017
    Myrtle, the fact that you've lost track of direction three times in the last two months is an indicator of the reactions to what has happened. Rather than worry about it which you don't sound like you are either - I would keep the tank more full. It's fine to take our own approach but it's practical to understand stuff IS happening inside and so the fact my sense of where I am is off somewhat isn't a source of worry - it's an expression of what I'm dealing with right now. I would consider changing your last sentence from "not any more, I guess" to "not right now, I guess".
    • CommentAuthorWolf
    • CommentTimeMay 14th 2017
    Mary, I think some things can't be explained. I have read of numerous things I'm convinced are true where someone suddenly knew someone else had died and that person did die at that time. I watched a documentary on the Thailand tsunami where an ordinary father was recounting that his son was certain something terrible was going to happen on this vacation. He kept having dreams about it and was very upset about it. That family lost their daughter in the terrible thing that did happen and the father said the son had never done anything like that before. There are tons of examples that stand up and I have a very skeptical eye about these things. Animals seem to understand an earthquake is about to happen. There are things that are hard to explain.

    Having said that I don't believe in magic. It was so coldly brutal how the two couples who were lifelong 'family' threw us out and closed ranks that I wished one of them would die so they didn't have their cozy little foursome. A year later I got a phone call that the ringleader of our group had a rare form of cancer and almost a year after that I got another phone call that she died and would I come to the funeral. I went to a basketball game instead that day and I never felt a touch of remorse because I had nothing to do with her getting cancer or dying anymore than I had anything to do with Dianne getting Alzheimer's. But their little plan of ditching the bad news and becoming a cozy little foursome didn't work out. Good. My sister groaned at how ruthless I am and I quite agree. Don't do that next time is my advice to them. I gave a painting to the surviving woman which had all three of the women in it in happier days. For her, both her friends were gone and I knew she always liked that painting. She cried when I gave it to her. Apparently I'm ruthless but not heartless.

    My effigy doll is a metaphor but even if I did stick needles into a rag doll it wouldn't cause anything, anymore than writing down amounts you would spend if you won a lottery causes you to win the lottery. I won't be needing those needles anymore anyway. A friend called me yesterday and told me in passing that my x-best friend has been calling him a lot more lately. He was kind of pleased about that and updated me on news about him including that he's now a grandfather. Isn't that great? I told him what's happened and we talked for a while about how weird this 'best friend' actually is. This person has known him since grade two and yesterday told me all kinds of things about him and the whole family that made me get up this morning and realize life is never what it seems because there's always more to it. Yesterday I found out my x-friend's sister whom I always liked has Alzheimer's now. The friend I was on the phone with admitted that he had the most intense crush on her in high school.

    It's a strange and wonderous life. I wanted to say that we change together - life and I. But my smart ass mind gives life a voice, "Dude. I've been here since the start of time. 'Change together' not so much." Except life and even the universe do have a beginning and an end just like me. Mountains last tens of millions of years but who wants to be a rock? Trees last hundreds of years but they don't do much either. I last a few decades (quick shout out to hygiene, diet, and medicine) which isn't very long in comparison, but I can dance and laugh and make jokes. I seem to have wondered way off topic. Nevermind.
    • CommentAuthorBev*
    • CommentTimeMay 14th 2017
    I've been feeling a little sorry for myself this morning, being my first Mother's Day without my husband and all, but you made me laugh with that last paragraph. Thanks.
    • CommentAuthorWolf
    • CommentTimeMay 15th 2017
    Last night I fell asleep reading a magazine. Somewhere during the night I rolled over and slept with my face on it presumably mistaking it for an unbelievably flat pillow. That's why I woke up some time later when I tried to roll over again and the magazine stuck attacking me like a a large bird on my face flapping it's wings. For an instant, as I became awake, I felt sheer terror not knowing what was flapping around right on top of my face. That only lasted an instant and it only seemed like a long time and when I realized what it was I sent it flying making Bandit shoot off the bed and out of the room like she'd been shot from a cannon. "It's all right!" I yelled into the night. "It wasn't an animal." I turned out the light and rolled over.

    Some time later, still last night, I felt something in bed with me and I reached down and (how do I put this?), felt Darth standing straight up like a piece of steel pipe. I patted him just a tiny bit saying in my mind I knew what it was like to be all dressed up with no place to go and fell asleep with visions of sugar plums dancing in my head. It wasn't that Darth was out stretching his legs that was unusual unless you have a vagina and have no clue what that's like. It was that I didn't fall asleep right away and moved around a little to get more comfortable and tried to fall asleep again and the little prairie dog kept bumping his head up against the quilt presumably trying to find a way to get out and away from deadbeat, no fun me.

    I thought about that just before six when the sun was streaming horizontally into my window and I heard the newpaper guy sticking the paper into my mailbox. For years I had no idea how the paper got into my mailbox but I've heard him so often lately I feel like I should go out and introduce myself (when Darth is alseep not unlike a bat hanging down from the cave ceiling). I got up doing my deep sighing exercises to get ready for the day. The cats showed up on cue at the bottom of the stairs. "Hi guys" I said in my usual way. I've taken to going to the bathroom when I get up to wash and drag a brush through the tangled and wiry overgrowth that used to be my hair.

    That's a real improvement over last year and numerous years before that where I would occasionally look and realize days had somehow gone by again. I've wondered sometimes where all those days went because I didn't live them so much as stagger through them. Several thousand of them actually. There's no money back guarantee either. It was then that I noticed something was horribly wrong with my face. It was covered in dark wavy things. I can tell you I'm sick and tired of my foot suddenly hurting like mad or my fingers aching or the swan lake number I dance when I put on my socks (hop hop hop). I clued in to what it was. It was the print on the magazine that came off when I tried to push my face through it last night. I couldn't read it because it was too smeared and besides it was backwards and I don't have Leanardo's talent for reading or writing that way.

    I washed it complaining out loud causing the cats to come up and look at what was going on that was throwing their schedule off. Before we went down to get coffee and cat food though, I went back into the bedroom to look at the magazine. It was over by the wall like a bird with all it's feathers discombobulated, poor thing, and flipping through it I found the page I was reading and saw that it was smeared beyond what Sherlock Holmes could decipher. I went downstairs realizing I would never read about Puerto Rico's debt to GDP ratio.

    As I finally put the cat food down I remembered poor Darth last night where when I rolled over it must have felt like a small pony was smothering him. I thought about Caitlyn Jenner and the fact that has become one of the least popular names for girls now. She doesn't have those issues rolling over in bed anymore. Instead she and her exceedingly odd family are fighting with the Kardasians for air time in front of the cameras, which is quite different.

    It's a strange and wonderous world I thought again sipping my coffee. It's too wacky for me by a factor of at least ten. Must be the German in me wanting to straighten buttons or something. I joked for years that I wanted to be the world's first German stand up comedian. That time has passed. Right Darth?
    • CommentAuthorWolf
    • CommentTimeMay 15th 2017

    I'm in trouble. I can feel the energy welling over like a kid in the back seat constantly squirming and asking if we're 'there' yet. Things like that were no problem for my dad, who calmly pulled the three row station wagon over to the side of the road, got out and walked around to the back, pushed the button to flip the back window up, and smacked me across the face. The car was stuffed with people, mostly my pretty cousins from Dearborn, Michigan. To this day I have no idea what I did. He calmly closed the window, walked around, got back in the car and pulled back on the road. They kissed me anyway. In fact I remember one night when all three of them took turns kissing me. That was a good night. Those make up for the fact that I got gypped not having my own kids to smack around. I was still in the period when that was ok. It wouldn't have been the same if dad had come around that station wagon and explained that I was taking a time out. Where???

    This isn't going to be easy. In fact these last few years have been like hopping around blindfolded in a room full of cattle prods trying to learn how to knit while inventing new theories about physics. "You should move forward more." some say. Here, give me one of those cattle prods, I want to have a heart to heart. I'll just precision slice off everything that has meaning and then it can be me shouting encouragement while I watch them reinvent their meaning. "Move forward more!", I would shout, "Maybe you need a prodding."

    I'm just kidding. Life is hard enough already. Right Darth? Just a little joke. Well, not that little. Fairly normal sized joke actually. Or so I've read. Sort of like hood ornaments which also had their day. Things come and go as Willie Nelson said in an epitaph that was passed around the male community solemnly; "I've outlived my Johnson" he kind of announced and the male population shuddered. Perhaps there was jubilation in the female camp. I didn't hear.
    • CommentAuthorcassie*
    • CommentTimeMay 15th 2017 edited
    If the magazine print on your face was reversed, then wouldn't you be able to read it when you looked at your face in the mirror??
    • CommentAuthorWolf
    • CommentTimeMay 15th 2017
    It was supposed to be funny. Oh well.

    I looked at what I said because it was too smeared to read at all. Having said that right, I then fell in love with using the DaVinci reference where if I'd thought it through like you did, I would have realized also that the imprint on my cheek had to be a reverse and looking into the mirror was the second reverse and therefore readable. "I would have been able to read it like Leanardo's 'secret' writing" is what I should have written.

    Defending that my joke was actually fairly normal sized I thought was funny. Many won't know that I introduced Darth to the board two or three years ago. "Darth, meet the board. Board, this is Darth" I wrote explaining what was already known to many. Darth Vader. Helmet head. I would have used Artie Johnson's bit from Rowan & Martin's laugh-in where he did the "...very interesting...but stupid" lines dressed as a German soldier with - you guessed it - a helmet head. But then I would be back to referring to Johnson and that's confusing. The Willie Nelson reference is from a song he wrote about the topic. But then I would be referring to Willie and that's not helping. I actually knew a Willie Johnson once. He didn't think it was funny either.

    I'm just kidding. I didn't actually name my own trouser snake Darth, Hairy Houdini, Justin Beaver, Moby Dick, or Lord Hardwick and the twins. I pretended to here some years ago and have continued that joke. I can't just refer to it as Dick because for one thing people would think I'm talking about one of the American presidents. "Mine is not crooked" Dick told America. "Mine may or may not be" answered Bill Big Hair. Makes you want to stand tall and proud. Right Darth?

    Try not to focus on the helmets now...

    (Cassie - it's the Artie Johnson bit where he comes up from behind a plastic plant and as thin lipped as possible says 'verrry interesting....but stupid". Not sure whether that made it to Australia back in the 1970's.)
    • CommentAuthorcassie*
    • CommentTimeMay 15th 2017 edited
    Hey, I got your joke, Wolf. My joke was "See, cassie, I can comment on the post without referencing the 95% majority of it."

    You should know that I got my degree in an all male university department. Among other things I learned was a wicked eye roll.
    Hi all,

    I check in now and then to see how you are all doing. I haven't posted lately but never forget how important this site was for me during my most difficult times.

    Today marks two years since I lost my husband to Alzheimers. In some ways, it feels like a lifetime ago.
    Other times, like now, the pain hits me like a hot fire in my stomach. My heart hurts tonight. I feel the need to take
    deep breaths.

    Most days my life is full. I am blessed with family and dear friends. But, I feel a place in my heart and mind that never stops thinking of Bob . I awake thinking of him and go to sleep thinking of him .

    These are words I found that speak to me:


    May we all find joy again.
    • CommentAuthormyrtle*
    • CommentTimeMay 24th 2017
    Hi Lorrie, It's good to hear from you. I remember when your husband died and how his condition deteriorated so quickly. I'm glad that you have family and friends to help fill your life now.

    I feel more like a single person than a widow, although I don't know what a widow is supposed to feel like. Somehow I can't process his death; I feel like he just disappeared and I've been transported back to my single days. But when I think about it, that doesn't make sense, sine I was married longer than I was single. I date my life as a single adult from when I graduated from college at 21 and started living on my own and supporting myself. I met my husband when I was 41, and we were together for 28 years (26 years married as of tomorrow, May 25). Now I'm single again and it's a familiar place, except I have this house and this cat, and a cellar full of my husband's tools and old boards and other guy stuff. Having just read Wolf's post, I realize that mine was a very different path than the one many of you were on.
    • CommentAuthormyrtle*
    • CommentTimeMay 24th 2017
    P.S. Wolf, It's not that I don't appreciate your sharing the names you've given to your anatomy, but what I actually want to know is the name of your other cat. I know that one of them is Bandit but what do you call the other one?
    • CommentAuthorWolf
    • CommentTimeMay 24th 2017
    Hi Myrtle,

    Bandit was just a kitten. She's a tuxedo. The abused cat we rescued is named Tahia. That is a Russian name. She was so sensitive she would pee when you came close to her. She was almost 2 when we took her and even though I didn't like the name, I decided not to change it because she was under enough stress already.

    It took years for her to have normal poops. She's only been talking now for two years. She's nice and plump now. They're indoor cats but they don't seem to be planning much of an escape. Lounging in the south window, then on the spare bed also on the south side in the sun for an hour or two, then it's time for 11am cream. They just had stone oven baked chicken from the pizza place I order from. That's the taste that makes Tahia's eyes cross when she's chewing it.

    I used to talk about hitching them up once in a while and riding around the kitchen through dust bunnies almost as big as real bunnies. I don't need to do that anymore because there aren't any now. I should get an award of some kind for that. Instead Tahia's teaching me how she likes her head scratched. If I'm too engrossed in what I'm doing, she jumps up on the table and complains in the softest voice you can imagine. Then immediately jumps down and assumes the position. If I don't respond she looks up at me hoping I haven't suddenly become retarded.

    Tahia is a blend mostly tabby with a touch of ginger and cream on the belly. She's 13 already. I wish Dianne had seen how well she's doing. I wish life went on forever. I have every intention of complaining afterwards to whomever present themselves. If it's Lucifer, I'm going to teach him how to Tango. I've always thought he'd look elegant dancing. If he doesn't want to, I'm going to barbeque him because he also looks delicious. "We're omnivores, you know" I would explain to him. After lunch I would gather up his former helpers from the seven levels of the mall of hades and line them up like the Rockettes. "And one, and two, and three, and kick! Come on girls! Get those legs up high!" And in a unison that would put Riverdance to shame, the whole place would be pulsating with the sound of those hooves soft stepping in unison as far as the eye can see. "And kick and step and kick and step!" I wonder how they would look in glitter?

    Her name is Tahia (Tie Yah) but I call her sh*thead. I've now called nine cats sh*thead. I have no idea why. I almost fell out of my seat when I watched Aliens where the cat made it back in the first movie and in the start of the second Sigourney Weaver says to her cat "And you, you little shithead, are staying here." I leaned over in the theater and whispered to Dianne "See. I'm not the only one who says that."

    I should charge Tahia for writing her life story just now but she doesn't have any money, can't tell time, doesn't help around the house, and is completely useless with jig saw puzzles. Come to think of it they're indistinguishable from free loading and penniless hobos.
    • CommentAuthorcassie*
    • CommentTimeMay 25th 2017
    Thanks Wolf, that was a lovely story to read.
    Lucky cats, to have found such a good home with you.
    • CommentAuthorcassie*
    • CommentTimeMay 25th 2017
    Hello Marche, hope that I didn't annoy you by removing my post above yours but I was feeling rather stupid about what I had written.
    Amidst you highly intelligent lot, I often feel that my input is inferior and I worry about that thus the editing.
    See you again soon, I hope.
    Oh, cassie*, no you didn't annoy. I don't know how you could think something you wrote was stupid, and truthfully, I don't remember what it was! Your posts are all thoughtful and compassionate with a dusting of wit.

    I bought a smaller house last week and the great clean-out has begun. I have two months that seem like a long time now, but in reality will fly by in the wink of an eye. It is all very overwhelming right now so I am eating the monster one forkful at a time. Or trying to. And congratulating myself on every sack of trash, recycle, shred and donate that goes out the door. It is emotional, too, to look at and handle these things of our life that is no more, just one more time. It slows things down, but I am too sentimental to be ruthless. I probably won't be posting much during this, although I try to read the site everyday. So know that I haven't gone away.
    • CommentAuthorcassie*
    • CommentTimeMay 25th 2017
    marche*, good luck with the move. Daunting at any time but for you at this stage, it will be very difficult.
    You will need your Turtle shell for this one! I will be thinking of you and I send you many blessings.
    • CommentAuthormyrtle*
    • CommentTimeMay 25th 2017
    This is getting very confusing with people reserving spaces for future comments or deleting their comments because they think they are inferior or others might not be interested. (Yes, Wolf, bluedaze, and cassie, I'm talking to you!) I for one am not smart enough to keep up with all this. I so enjoy sharing thoughts and experiences with all of you. IMO, our comments are all of equal value. But and we are all different personalities and our comments reflect that.

    Wolf, You should get a medal for what you have done for that sweet cat, Tahia. You have helped her to become her true cat self, which is so important to cats. BTW, my husband also said terrible things about our cats but like you, he waited on them as though they were royalty. Which, in fact, they were.

    Well, today (my 26th wedding anniversary) I went out to inspect the inscription on my husband's gravestone and when I was there, I realized that Monday was Memorial Day, so I went to a garden center and bought some "cemetery pots" and put them on the stone (which also marks the graves of my parents). I had had two appointments earlier and done a lot of errands, so I was exhausted when I got home. At least it got me out of the house.
    • CommentAuthorcassie*
    • CommentTimeMay 25th 2017 edited
    Ok Myrtle, I stand rebuked , I won't do it again!
    What is a "cemetery pot?" Did you put plants in them or are they decorative only?
    • CommentAuthormyrtle*
    • CommentTimeMay 25th 2017
    Well, that's what I call a pot of flowers sized appropriately for placing at a grave stone. A lot of the newer cemeteries here do not allow you plant flowers in the ground or to put pots in front of the stone, so stones with little platforms for pots at the base have become the norm. (The reason for this is lawn maintenance.)
    Just speaking for myself, I am interested in keep it coming! I may not post, but I read it all!
    • CommentTimeMay 26th 2017
    Here's my two-bits worth (Cassie, you will recognize it):
    I’m working hard on the 2nd draft of my novel. Lots of valuable feeddback from the editor. She viewed it with fresh eyes and pointed out sections that needed reworked. Because it’s based on a historical event, I wanted to get the details right: what ships were in port at that particular time, the tides, the moon phases. I lost my focus on the story line, and that’s what I’m cleaning up now.
    I do check in on the A-Z site regularly and will get back on it in a week or so ( when I get the revised ms. out.)
    • CommentAuthorcassie*
    • CommentTimeMay 26th 2017
    The vases are built into the marble slab at our cemetery here, one on either side.
    I have a double plot so my husbands' plaque is on the left with flowers in his vase but the right side
    is blank and the vase empty.
    Seeing it there waiting for me, did freak me out at first but I am ok with it now.
    Keep up the good work, Mary, nearly done!
    I, too, may not post often but I do like to read ALL your posts. So keep them coming.

    Myrtle... I don't feel like my image of a widow either. What is it supposed to feel like? I still wear my wedding band on my left hand. I never take it off. Does that mean I still feel married? I think I do. Two years since he passed!

    Cassie... My husband's stone has half waiting for my inscription. It does sometimes feel weird to think I will actually be on that stone someday..I am 67 so I hope someday is very far off.

    Mary... Good for you..impressive ..can you tell us when it is published and the title?

    Wolf.. You have always been a consistent contributer to this site. Keep it up. I hope you feel some healing.

    Marche... Wow.. Selling a house and buying a new one. You are indeed a strong person . Good luck.

    I am still struggling to finish going through many of my husband's possessions and cleaning out his den.

    It is a truth that we each walk this journey on a different path. But, all one step at a time.