Tuesday, September 4, 2012



When I read a good book, I tell somebody. When they read it, love it and we talk about it-

Remember Hillenbrandt's book about our runner, war hero, and a geriatric fellow that is still in GOOD SHAPE, Louie. You have to love him just by his name.

UNBROKEN is an amazing book.
I loved it.

Recently, My neighbor listened to it while she did yard work then asked if she could look at some of the pictures from my book.

. Happily, I ran and grabbed it off the bookshelf , flipped through its pages; recalled parts that shook me and took me right to where Louie was at on that yellow raft in the Pacific.
 She brought up one part of the book I'd underlined about Louie's success in surviving on the raft. Initially I was scared what I'd underlined or possibly have written....It's pages are turned, they are marked by my thoughts, underlined in bright yellow highlighter or red pen- their USED, man

Yikes, which part? I asked her.

"When they were on the raft, and how they kept talking...."


I needed to go back and see how Lou survived that ordeal again. Cause I was sorta feeling sluggish- out floating in a raft in the Pacific with no sunscreen.

Once I got it back I read what I'd highlighted:

"He [Louie] kept thinking of a college physiology class he had taken, in which the instructor had taught them to think of the mind as a musclethat would atrophy if left idele. Louie was determined that no matter what happened to their bodies, theirr minds would stay under their control. "

Lou, wasn't on prednisone so that totally was one thing going for him, right? 
I thought about what I was doing with that particular muscle.

Yes, I was reading. But I'd grabbed a book you could read in your sleep for the last few days.
I had quit forming in my mind what I would "Write".

Whether in my journal or for a blog piece. This summer I started to not recall certain words when I wanted them and that was FRUSTRATING me. And I was blaming it on prednisone, etc.

Yes, I still go to the library and get a good book.
An amazing, thought provoking book. But I was getting a little on auto-pilot.
The summer was coming to an end. You saw the Trellis Success.
I had thought we'd have an awesome garden.

Not even the purple lobelia crawled up over the cement border.

(P.S don't do the soccer net thing.
The tomatoes didn't even climb it. Do use it for peas. Plant more than a couple rows. You can never get enough of walking out into the garden and eating peas straight from the

It felt like whatever it is that the 2nd place winners at the Olympics were feeling.
Remember their faces?

"Meh. Second place." It must have been awful.
Okay, truthfully,  I would be devastated to get so close to 1st, and then have to walk away from it with the silver.
But still...

 I'll admit that's how I'd feel too at the Olympics.
I want 1st.

I want the blue ribbon.

J. acted in a similar fashion when given a pink ribbon at a State Track Meet.

Excited, I grabbed it and told him he Ribboned!!!! He was AT STATE!!!!!!!!!!
Competitive, like me, he was unsatisfied, I thought. Really it came down to the ribbon being the color pink.
Wasn't masculine enough for him and he refused to put it in his scrapbook. Unbeknowst to him, I did.

The Silver and Bronze winners who showed true enthuisiasm at their success coming in at their prospective place need cards written to them, no email or blog, but a real letter with a real person's ink telling them thanks for showing us what winners DO.

So, where was I? Ah, how I was feeling. Bit slump-ish.

So her is the optimism: The garden is fine. It got me out usually every day to water it. At least the flowers. I neglected it only in emergency. Which cost me on the weeding end- but my motivation for gardening is to weed for relaxation. It made me laugh that the Trellis will turn into  a Tee-Pee for the grandkids.

AND I will make big plans for next year's garden. I already have done a picture of it in my mind.
Needs to be put to paper and then boom I will have done what Louie did on the raft: See the Future.

 KEY to Louie's success. Even if he'd died.

AS I read over those pages Louie and his raft mate were
 -talking, recalling- keeping that brain MOVING. Remember they'd prepare mental meals each day? Three meals a day. They'd go through every step.

I wonder if I were listless on a raft and starving if I could recall a recipe because I still have to pull out the red checked recipe book for scrambled eggs and my Rhubarb Pie.  I better start memorizing ingredients again.

I needed  my neighbor's reminder about Louie. I needed to recall how to endure.

When you are in pain it is VERY easy to find the most comfortable position - usually fetal-like. But once there, especially when you have Crohns, you STAY there for as long as you can.

There are universal themes we ALL  get and that is  PAIN.And BRAIN stalemate. It can come in any form and produce similar effects;l ike the fetal position.


If I was on the raft right now I think I could only make this sort of meal from memory: 
Pour milk. Shake boost into the Vitamin D. Drink.

But, it's all part of the deal. Being reminded about Unbroken, I had to appreciate the simple steps to Enduring.

Fellow, sufferes, don't feel required to recite Thanksgivings Recipe Roll ingredients....  just keep goin', keep the lines of communication with open. One fella with Louie,  that succumbed to the
"inevitable", retracted into himself..... I have to admit it is easier to heal if I shut up.

It saves energy.
And you need that when you are sick. It's easy to stay 'shut up' when you are dealing with a monotonous regimen. Simple if you are not fighting infection/disease.
This is what I see.... the boy on the right.
Yes, I keep posting this picture. But I love it because it shows his readiness. Him, SEEING what he's gonna do once the ball snaps.
And it's easy to remember he likes mustard sandwiches.

Okay, I have said enough. Here are some book suggestions:

Smoking Ears and Screaming Teeth, A Celebration of Eccentricity and Experimentation. It is written by a funny, smart Brit. It is about men and women who invented and experimented on themselves to better mankind vs. using orphans or POWS- etc.

Restless Souls I read this Sharon Tate book because it was suggested to me along with the above.
I have never really wanted to get into the Manson murders but this isn't a gory focus on the murders.
Family perspective after four decades and their sufferings post losing a daughter.
The biggest thing I pulled from it was motivation to stay involved with what happens in our legal system.

Do we know where our local judges stand and do we go vote? I was impressed with the action Sharon's mom and sister and niece have taken to keep an eye on elections, laws that affect us whether we realize it or not.

What am I reading right now?

The Yellowstone Story.
HIstory. Love it. In slow snippets. I am going back and forth betweenthat book and Unbroken again. Snippets.

My friend had a book on her shelf called Drive. written by a man with the last name of Pink, I believe. I opened that up and enjoyed a page. But I won't be spending a lot of time reading it simply because it is a review of what I already feel I know; we are driven/motivated by what we enjoy and we want independence in that endeavor.
(Again, pic above is my motivation/drive. And, boy, I love him.)

What are you reading to build your brain muscles?

Or even to relish?

Tell me! And why.....!

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