Friday, December 26, 2014

Disease Doesn't take Vacation & He Came!

"Bad news,"

a faint voice caught me mid-dream Christmas Morning.  It was Jaden.

"He didn't come. Santa didn't come."

he sounded down trodden; thinking that something "magical" might happen over night but his point in Santa being "fake", and me telling him that if he stopped believing then he would end up getting something useful- like clothes, and my testimony to the fact that when we DO believe in the spirit of Christmas magical miracles happen!

The lack of THE Gift were  just that- a big lie; everything about me saying he should always Believe and why- were set for naught.


the ONE thing that I was waaaaayyyy off on thinking of getting him or anything- had not come.

IT was not there.

I blinked a few times and thought back on the previous night. Mind you, I was grateful this conversation with J was at a decent hour.

 Compared to my 4 a.m. "'hoooo-raaayyyy he caaammmme!'"
pouncing on my parent's bed on many a magical Christmas mornings and begging them to get up so we could open presents. Eventually, Padre just gave the go ahead to start without him after we got older. Or he did.

Back to J and I's situation....

  'He didn't come? '

 I thought mulling the prospects. No sooner had consciousness truly come to me, I felt the sharp pains around my rib cage. The rib incident and the throb of a tiny toe flooded back into my broken body.

*I'm sorry but it makes me laugh to have the icing on my immuno-suppressed life is a broken toe. But they hurt! LIke a paper cut.


His giddy voice made me happy.

Mission accomplished-

joy !

had been felt. Even over the strenuous two day celebration of Christmas dealing with this disease, large family dinners, and prednisone needs that had to be endured, I felt joy. In a bitter-sweet kind of way.

I had braced myself for it (hoopla festivities) so when I ran out of zip- I rested. I asked for help, too. J. got to be my personal servant in order to earn money for things he wants.
It was hard to excuse myself from festivities or talking and go "rest."
It seems so geriatric.

But I found that I would rest and when I got back up and into the thick of things, everyone was still there!  However, I still missed several of the Reindeer Games.

(I have loved hooked rugs lately and this one was a steal! Everything apparently goes on sale Christmas Eve- next to this pillow is a book I have enjoyed on hard nights.  My neighbor loaned me the book to help J. on his project and it helped me feel the Christmas spirit this month. Thanks, Joan.)

I take back how I said I "endured"- the two days had not been "endured", they had been accomplished; like running a marathon or summiting a peak. Or finishing a sdchool project.

I was happy. And Relieved.
(still with a lot of hurt.. but happy. And I let my doctors have a break from me having to come see them until whenever they get back to town.. If this is shingles- then it is too late for an anti-viral. And, no, I can't get the vaccine due to the immuno-suppression of my body)

(one of the random projects Padre helped me with during the latest prednisone taper- which started in the summer)

It was hard getting through everything and I wasn't even the one putting it on!!I am glad my sisters and brothers helped my mom put it on. The grandkids had a riot.

 Especially feeling a pain in the rib cage like I had been a Grid kid speared by his opponent with his helmet and me not wearing padding or something.

Shingles usually has a rash. This does not. But it feels like the menacing malady I had three years ago- burning, itching, debilitating pain. And I have an Entyvio infusion coming up...... which means I gotta get healthy before my immune system dumps for a bit.

Realizing that disease, injury, and sickness don't take holidays- I racked my brain to recall if I had ever seen Santa not come.

At least in J and I's 'lease agreement' as a stay-at-home daughter, we've had produced many a magical memory Christmas morning.

(this does not mean I have leaned on my folks for the surprises. I have had to set my alarm to remind Santa to come so as not have something like what the beginning of this blog post is talking about.)

The Christmad Eve party came back to my mind; a swarm of toddlers climbing presents, eating and drooling chocolate, etc. etc.

 I remembered  my new stocking found earlier that day for 3 dollars and recalled items within it when I couldn't sleep earlier Christmas morning. I was busy hurting and had tried to blog or read through the hurt.
Everything came back to my memory.

"Are you sure?" 
I asked Jaden shoving my face into my pillow to keep a smile that had crossed my face from being seen but he was well on his solemn way, back to the family room.

J: "Yes, there are only the same presents that were there yesterday." he said- totally deflated and his falling onto the couch was completely audible.
"Actually there is one that looks like clothes or something."

Remember those boxes, Readers? The rectangular soft ones that you know has underwear or socks in them?

I had heard him run upstairs to check that tree before settling into a deep depression of the Christmas Day Blues.  So I knew the weight of not having 'The gift 'was sinking in hard.

"Well, I was up earlier than you and I saw some stuff in my stocking- have ya checked yours?"


(Yay! I Grinch Gifted me this Doile Tree Topper!)

Then the sound of Suess-like jubilation rang through the basement. I knew he'd walked around his bean bag and probably stubbed his toe on a box that looked like what he had asked for.
It was like a scene straight out of the movie
A Christmas Story.

I heard his footsteps then take three stairs at a time, plant themselves on the landing and then  race across the kitchen floor,  finally landing in'Padre's room. Where the big bear still slumbered.


he exclaimed. And woke up the Padres. Again, glad he is a tween and slept in on Christmas morning.

Before long he was down stairs again and begging me like a dog wanting an afternoon walk, instead he was wanting to open presents.

 I couldn't, Readers.

I literally was too ill to do it right then. I had to tell him he could open a couple then wait til I was ready and able to do the rest.

When you are sick or are in pain there is a space between being laser focused on healing to being aware and observing things around you.
I love when I can get passed that point of critical concentration on curing, to being able to look  OUTside of myself and take in life. And other people's lives. It's a lot interesting, believe me.

It is sometimes a slow, gradual process however.  And it never ceases to call my attention to it when something from outside the cellular world of mine unveils itself. It has a purpose-It is the body's coping strategy. There is only so much energy to go around and when you are sick your body is quite selfish and holds onto all the energy it can until it gets what it needs to get you back on your feet.
At least adrenal wise.
Mind over Matter doesn't work in core vs. edges of disease, etc.
Tonight, or last night, was Christmas Eve. It was a nice day for Idaho Falls. No snow. Only one rude person on the road weaving in and out of traffic only to end up next to us at the next light, and only one appt.
However, it was an early appt. - early enough to get me to it, write two Christmas Cards and debate a quick peak in a store that had 70% off Christmas stuff.
Ya know that one extravagant picture I plucked off the Internet months ago and wanted to incorporate into this year's theme?
(closer examination I can see several different birds. Good thing I DID NOT notice this before, Readers!)
It had some peacocks in it.
Where the heck was I going to get some pheasant feathers or the bird for that matter? Besides the local zoo or a small shipment of feathers from Amazon, I wasn't going to go all gusto in this area and just stick to my fake fruit that I have held onto- knowing it would one day have a destiny.
 So I settled on two of Kurt's stars that had the teals, greens, and blue colors of the peacock bird to anchor the ends of my fake garland and help me with my own "Tangerine Room."

 Until today, Christmas Eve. The day that I promised would be a day that would have been proceeded by several days of hunkering down drinking hot cocoa, throwing my head back and laughing at old movies, putting puzzles together with Jaden, finishing up some last minute wrapping, and just plain 'ol, you know, hunkering down.
Avoiding retail stores and all they entail which is to leave you with less money than you had when you walked into.
When I quickly beat a crowd of shoppers all of this hunkering fell to the wayside. Heck, J. wasn't even out of bed yet. I might as well see what the deals were at:
At Kohls.

No sooner had I scooted past all the clothes that were on sale did I see the Peacocks.
"You have to be kidding me." I said out loud. Because they were way cheap. And way cute. And matched the Tangerine Room idea. In a round about way. These were fake, those were possibly shot and killed on some English mountain side, stuffed and set up in an actually Martha Stewart Lodge.
I bought one for a couple bucks ,
After picking up a towel, wash rag with a Cardinal on it, and other 75% off little frames for our pictures taken this year,  J. and I watched Studio C on the TV and ate a cookie from:
Love at First Bite
while I centered the bird on the mantle.

It needed some mending so I immortalized the bird's glitter to its body with Mod Podge and then clipped it onto a branch in the middle of my sagging Christmas swag.
Do you think God cares how I decorate? Or if I should? Either way, I felt like he was aware of me when I came across just some simple things that added to what I was trying to achieve for my family in my parent's home; a little haven.
Later that night, I asked a few of the older nieces and nephews for their input on my prednisone induced decorating.
One, who I don't to see often, and is Audrey Hepburn's look a like followed me downstairs and listened to me explain how I was torn between two looks this year and so I did both!

: The warm white glow vs.
the Frozen white light and shimmery sparkle snow look that everyone is attributing to the movie:

I flipped off the main lights and let her walk from each side of the room.
The polar opposite sides looks were split by a simple table and bookcase that I'd used for my wrapping station.
Like a judge in one of those 'Best In Show Competitions', she looked over my Icy side. With her hands behind her back and her eyes taking in each of my decorations I was beginning to wonder if I wanted an 11 year old's opinion!
She sauntered over to the "warm side";. My favorite side.

She then climbed up on the rocking chair, Buck, hardly moving him because she herself is as light as the peacock's feather, to take in the "woodsy" display atop the bookcase that I created as if the house were going to be on the front cover of a marth Steward magazine.

Taking a long look around the whole room,
She finally piped:
"I like it!"

(a sincere compliment that actually made me feel good! Mission accomplished! I made a difference and memory in the lives of my loved ones.)
She quite possibly will be a Pageant judge in her later years- she's that qualified.
The next compliment came from a cowboy. Cowboy # 2. He came down stairs and with wide eyes looked over the lit up room and asked me if we could turn off
"The big lights"
so that he could just see the Christmas lights because he really liked the blue ones. The blue ones were lined along J's old school sled. I wonder if they, as well as J., are wondering if we are going to get any snow and can actually shed the lights and take the old runner sled for a ride?

Because I had made the trip to two stores for the discounted items, I used up the energy I needed to actually get ready for the party. Or at least change into something you don't mind having your picture taken in.
Or wearing a brand new scarf! Oh, Well! I will tomorrow!
So I had to go take a nap.

*I am not feeling the greatest. So I will publish this post as is. Add more pics to the bottome part of the post later. . After the nauseau leaves. And this dang weariness.

The body mends in its own due time. I mentioned the "set back" in a couple posts back that were unexpected; I thought the prednisone taper would be my only "worry" right now. In a sense it is the only "worry" as it is woven into the latest of injuries/illnesses, etc. I'm sure it has to be.
But I didn't initially categorize it that way. Say, for instance when I broke my toe by catching it on the leg of a chair.
Yet, it happened and I had to put away my goals; small goals, reached and realized, I would need to "Start Over" again. AGAIN. Which is the nature of prednisone. There is no way to make a goal or game plan on that thing. Only one: off it. Whenever that is.
Isn't that life? Starting over again and again, and again each day. Whether one day with a broken toe/stubbed toe, or with amazing health that led you into the Navy Seal Program. P.S. I am so thankful that is NOT me out there. Thank you Navy Seals.
The seasons symbolize the process of growing, cutting down, and then a dormant period; why shouldn't I expect the same? Granted Idaho has a way of messing those seasons up and confusing nature, so it is on a bit of a prednisone schedule itself, but for the most part the world goes round n round in the same way.
I'd like to have it be over a larger span period between bouts,  but I am learning.
So back to this gray area..... it is amazing to me that once I am able to recover physically, mentally, etc. I am able to take in more. I didn't facebook for a long time so I was 'out of the loop.' And it was actually a nice loop to get out of. I wasn't burdened by the complexities of the outside world and others situations while dealing with my own, very heavy burdens but it made it hard for those who know me to keep tabs on me and help me if they could.
The closer friends that actually call me and we kept in touch in real ways, didn't burden me with extra weight to worry me. I appreciated that a lot. And apoligize I didn't recipricate when I have heaped it on when you have needed me to shoulder some of yours. sorry!
As I have unfolded into being able to take in more and more of what I have missed or current events;
I am amazed at YOU!
That's all.
As I have healed in my space and God's time, as I have tried to make a space for J. and I to feel a bit of a haven, the world has turned and friends have had kids, had them graduate, and sent them off to college.
But it feels that way!
And they have gotten really good at what they do in life; with the talents they have been given. Initially, I felt like I had to hurry and "catch up".  While I was debating material that feels like bear fur for a throw pillow, although cute,  some were graduating from med school and things of that nature. And that made me feel sorta small.
In some cases, I've had to go over and repeat things I have already learned. Which has been truly a defeating feeling. Actually, the worst feeling has been the way my mind has jumped from one thing to another in a manner that I had seen in the students I taught. Now, I am getting a feel for why one minute they were sitting criss crossed applesauce during the calendar countdown, and dumping applesauce out of some body's lunch bag when I looked up next; no rhyme or reason.
So out come my lists and some serious "stay focused" self talk. While multi-tasking can be a good quality in some instances, in others, it just isn't. And i can't think of an example that is funny enough right now because I should be asleep.

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