Thursday, February 26, 2015

not my kettle

Have you ever loaded your dishwasher
and straightened up
and glanced about the kitchen
and realized that it didn't look any better than when you started?

I've been sick AND busy.
Now that is a lethal combination.
My housework has suffered right along with me.
My appliances have been left to their own devices.
Well, most of them.
Not my kettle.
I've been trying to drink myself back to health.
Mostly hot water but some apple glog (don't you love that name?) and tea of various poorly brewed strengths.
It hasn't worked.
I'm off to the doctor reluctantly today.
Perhaps I am teetering on the edge of wellness and am about to 'turn the corner.'
"Turn the corner' as opposed to 'turn up my toes.'
I'll know soon.

jump right in

I wish I had a dollar for every alphabet book I've ever read where x means xylophone. I'd be a rich woman today.
Sure enough, yesterday as my tiny granddaughter and I flipped the pages together, we found ourselves gazing down at The Letter X and a rainbow colored xylophone. "What's that?" I ask. "A Hellophone," she answers confidently.
I love that so much!
It makes me think of language and learning in general because children are just so very clever aren't they. My daughter called a trampoline a bounce-o-line when she was two, although at first, she had called it a tunic. What?? Why on earth a tunic? Turns out that in Winnie The Pooh and the Blustery Day, Christopher Robin takes off his tunic and he and Rabbit catch Pooh as he tumbles from the sky on it and of course he bounces.
Nothing like a good book to enrich your vocabulary.
Especially books with British expressions. Books like Winnie the Pooh or Beatrix Potter's Tales of Peter Rabbit. Children aren't bothered a smidge by the vagaries of the English language. I suppose to the young, all language is mysterious.
They look and they listen and they think.
And they jump right in.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

gilds the sky

February mornings have a chill of mauve about them and a marmalade brightness. It's that clash of cool color against the warm that is so breathtaking I think. Makes me think of the old hymn that begin, 'when morning gilds the sky....'

Thursday, February 5, 2015

my own heart

"Would you like to go the the story time at the Library?" I ask my littlest granddaughter.
"Yay!!" she says hopping up and down.
Thoughts of fun lead on to thoughts of even more fun it seems and she adds, "We go to the beach? I build a sandcastle?"
A girl after my own heart.

set me straight

I'm not surprised when my baby granddaughter says 'no,' when I ask her if she is a nice baby. No is her new favourite word now that she is two.
"I'm a nice girl," she adds, just to set me straight.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

not usually

Dare I tell you this story.
It has a happy ending.
I didn't know that though when I lived it.
I believed something that wasn't true instead.

It happened last fall.
Just after mid-terms.
I wondered later how different my day would have been if I just hadn't gone to the computer and turned it on that morning.
But I did.
And for a while, I believed something awful and I'm not sure I've completely recovered yet.

I've been taking some University courses as part of a Library diploma program.
They've been online, but the exams are all on campus.
I had two mid-terms scheduled for the same day.
A double header.
When I arrived back home, arms full of books, my husband asked how it had gone.
"Easy peasy," I said, confidently.

It takes a while for marks to be posted but I didn't feel worried at all.
And sure enough, one morning, there they were.
The little red arrow showed that grades were available and I happily clicked.
It was the click of doom.
My first thought was that there had to be some kind of mistake.
That I had to be looking at someone else's grade.
It was a failing grade.
Not just a poor grade but a clear fail.
How could that be.
I felt something akin to horror.
It wasn't that I had clearly failed the course that came as such a shock.
It was that I had felt I had passed.
And not just passed, but passed well, and easily.
The only explanation for such a disconnect was not a pretty one.
I think one of the hazards of caring for someone with dementia, especially a mother or father, is that you fear, even if you never let on to anyone... you fear that you may end up the same.
And now it all seemed too late.
Too late for my dreams.
I wandered around the house in a daze of disbelief.
I wandered around the house in my pajamas and cried.

Several hours trickled by.
I felt alternately sick and sad, hot with embarrassment and cold with dread.
I'm pleased to say that I eventually 'got a grip.'
'Enough,' I said firmly to myself.
'You are NOT a quitter.'
I made a decision to finish a lesser version of my planned schooling.
I emailed the instructor and asked to speak to her about my terrible grade.

Almost immediately, an email appeared, followed by another.
Both from the professor.
The first was to the entire class.
There had been a technical glitch in posting the marks.
They had incorrectly re-calibrated percents.
She would be posting the correct grades shortly.
The second email was just to me.
It was a very heartful apology.
I had done considerably better than the class average.
She wanted me to know that.
She hoped it would help.

It did help to know that I had passed well but I can't say that I felt happy.
Or even relieved.
When I think of it now I can still remember the strange numbness I felt.

Life can really put a stick in the spokes can't it?
And our self esteem goes sailing over the handle bars.
It sure hurts to hit the ground but the damage isn't usually permanent.
Not usually.