Wednesday, June 7, 2017

The "New" Normal





Hello All.

I missed posting the past two Sundays simply because of life happening. On May 28, my oldest niece took me to a Little League baseball game in which her grandson, Kayden, was playing. After two games she brought me home because my energy had gone kaput! This past Sunday (6/4), I enjoyed company from out of town. I hope to blog about that visit this coming Sunday. This mid-week posting is in three parts. Part I helps explain why the next two parts are important in my life right now.

Part I: Background:
Right now I’m dealing with the consequences of four ailments.
1.     Because glaucoma has severely affected my field of vision, I had to give up driving back in October, so mobility is somewhat difficult at times and asking for help in getting to doctor appointments and shopping is stressful because I have only five people to ask and many appointments. Moreover, I am finding three or four organizations from which I can get rides. All that is working out well.

2.     I live in an area known as “tornado alley” so the barometric pressure often changes, causing Meniere’s headaches, which are like migraines in intensity, without the light sensitivity. They come almost every day during this time of year, but I have a prescription that helps immensely with this.

3.     In 2011, I was diagnosed with a form of cutaneous T-cell lymphoma. At that time, I needed light treatments—3x a week for nine months. It is now active again, so I’m doing the treatments, which will keep the skin cancer in Stage 1. Mobility, however, is an issue as the clinic is in another area, nearly twenty miles away.

4.     I’m still recuperating from the back operation that has left me prone to feeling down in the dumps on overcast days. Fortunately, that six-month recuperation period will end in mid-September. I am getting better every day.

Part II: A “New” Normal:
Recently I watched a television ad for a cancer drug. It ended with the woman and her collie walking outside into a lovely day. The narrator says, “She welcomes her ‘new’ normal because a lot has changed, but a lot hasn’t.”

That advertisement captured my attention. For me, a lot has changed also—especially the not being able to drive—but I am so grateful that I can still read and write. Also my friends—near and far—and family give me great support.

Part III: Over What Hill?
Recently Arkansas Patti posted an eloquent review of a series of five novels by Effie Leland Wilder, who was 85 when the first one, “Out to Pasture,” was published. At that time, Wilder lived in the Presbyterian Home of Summerville, South Carolina.

I got Wilder’s second book—Over What Hill?—from the library and enjoyed it so much that I’ve purchased a volume containing her first three books. With her humorous stories, Wilder helped me realized that I’ve been concentrating on what’s wrong with my life, rather than being grateful for all that is good about it; I haven’t been grateful for the “new” normal.

I highly recommend Wilder’s books. As the flap of her third one says, “With grace and humor, Wilder gently pokes fun at growing older, all the while reflecting on the challenges and losses that seniors face, as well as the special wisdom that can be gained from aging.”

Peace.




22 comments:

  1. For all you are going through, I applaud your Gratefulness. It takes work because we naturally notice the negative. Good for you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Birdie, I surely have been noticing the negative for the past two or three years as one ailment after another has come to roost here within me. But I've finally taken myself by the scruff of the neck and said, "Enough already!" Peace.

      Delete
  2. Ah, gratitude! Wonderful stuff.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Linda, yes, gratitude makes all the difference and your postings really reveal that. Peace.

      Delete
  3. Replies
    1. Dear Fishducky, yes, "love" is the word! Peace.

      Delete
  4. Gratitude is a gift which keeps on giving isn't it? And we all get discouraged from time to time. I am so glad you are seeing the positives.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Sue, I hope to post this Sunday about looking for and finding the beauty around me. And yes, I can feel gratitude settling the unease within me. Peace.

      Delete
  5. Wow, you have a lot of changes to deal with. I think having to give up driving is one of the major life changes that affects people and it doesn't get a lot of attention. The consequences are so far-reaching and limiting.
    I was having a bit of a pity party this morning and I thank you for helping me put things into perspective and remember that the only control we usually have is our attitude toward our situation.
    God bless!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Cynthia, back in 2006 when Meziere's Disease entered my life, I came to realize as you've said here that the only control I have is the way I response with words and actions. I can choose to become bitter or to seek out and embrace the good. Thank heavens I'm at that stage of my journey.

      The not driving is difficult because I've been an independent single woman all my adult life. But slowly I learn to ask for help and wonderfully friends and family are so generous. Peace.

      Delete
  6. I have read her first book and have the second one on order from the library. I too learned about her from Arkansas Patti. Effie is an inspiration to us all! :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear DJan, because I no longer drive, I now use the "Library by Mail" service of our local library. It's fantastic. The books come to me in the mail and I return them that way without having to pay any postage. So I've just returned the first three Wilder books and have asked for the last two. I hope the library can find them for me. I'm glad Effie is inspiring you, too! Peace.

      Delete
  7. The 'new' normal, huh? ha ha----As I get old, I had better learn to just live and laugh at the changes --because if not, I'd be depressed constantly... I turn 75 in August and found out recently that I have Osteoporosis in my hips... WHAT??? ME????? Can't be.. I'm NOT that old.... ha ha ha......Oh Well---it IS the 'new' normal...

    Glad you are finding groups to help with the driving... Not being able to drive has to be very hard and certainly takes away lots of the independence for sure... Hang in there.....Keep up that good attitude.

    Hugs,
    Betsy

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Betsy, osteoporosis of the hips sounds painful. I hope that it won't cut down on you visiting all the parks with your husband. I would surely miss your postings about your travels. Peace.

      Delete
  8. It takes time to adjust to such changes. I'm glad you're coping quite well now and are doing better! Except those headaches, those must be quite annoying. And thanks for suggesting the book. I will look into it!
    Best wishes,
    Baiba

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Baiba, the books are really a delight! I read your latest posting today and I'm so happy for you. I can remember four years ago when you were starting college. Now you are a young and responsible and thoughtful adult. It's such a pleasure to know you. I admire your fortitude. Peace.

      Delete
  9. I really wish you weren't facing such challenges but you seem to be rolling with the flow better than most would. I am delighted you liked Effie's books also. I found them a delight and she made aging seem not so bad after all. Thank you for the shout out.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Patti, please read the reply I wrote above to DJan's comment. The "Library by Mail" is such a wonder. And thanks so much for telling us about the Wilder books on your blog. Fish ducky and DJan both commented that they have read them, prompted by you! Peace.

      Delete
  10. Now dealing with spouses Alzheimers. We focus on our two mottos. We're a team and we keep on truckin...:)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Troutbirder, I'm sorry to learn about that your spouse has Alzheimers, but your two mottos seem so positive to me. They will, I hope, help you journey through the hard times ahead. Peace.

      Delete
  11. Thank you for the update, Dee. I know this has been such a troubling time but you wear it with grace, in spite of all the issues that have arisen.
    Now - yet another author for me to pursue. I have Effie Leland Wilder on my list and will look for her books.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Penny, I hope you enjoy Effie when you come to her book. TI read the 2nd one first and then the 1st one. It didn't seem quite as spontaneous as the 2nd. I think she got freer after the first was published. But all three I've read were a delight. Peace.

      Delete