Saturday, April 25, 2009

Dazed and Confused

This has been the WORST winter of my life!!

This winter has officially been declared the snowiest AND coldest on record. This is highly unusual, as snowy winters are generally warmer. Our normally cozy winter days were consumed with moving snow in subzero temperatures...over and over and over....

I've lost 3 friends and 2 close relatives.

Last fall my Dad was diagnosed with prostate cancer. Last week he was diagnosed with colon cancer. He's scheduled for surgery on May 11th. In addition, Dad's knees have deteriorated to the point that walking and driving have become extremely difficult for him. We've been taking up the slack with his home maintenance chores.

My Mom is showing more and more signs of dementia.

Our economy, which has been sliding into the shitter for the past 15 years, is worse than ever. Instead of desperately looking for jobs for our area, our county and city officials are suing each other over the placement of a stupid ROAD! Guess who's footing the bill for BOTH sides of this lawsuit?

Our beloved nephew has turned to alcohol and suicidal thoughts following a painful divorce. His brother, the blithering idiot, is awaiting trial for his SECOND DUI!

Z has been struggling with depression and sleep problems, on and off, throughout the winter.

Our area has lost hundreds of Red Polls, 20 cats, and several squirrels to salmonella.

Our half-wit, redneck neighbor is slowly encroaching onto our property. A fence, at least on that corner of our property, is becoming a necessity.

We discovered that L is passive-aggressive, and I have been enabling him for the past 30 years. You know what? Right now I'm too overwhelmed to work on this problem. I've had enough head-banging moments this winter.

Do you ever feel like you're spinning your wheels? Yeah, me too!

Remember when I tackled 3 yrs worth of mending in February? The picture above is the new stack of mending that has accumulated since then.

Our 5-yr-old refrigerator died in February. I'm now in the process of trying to get Sears to send us the $75 delivery charge rebate they owe us....VERY time consuming! My next step is to contact our State Attorney General's office.

I really need to start the process of getting us all border crossing cards, so we can get back into our own country when, and IF, we're able to visit SME. I really don't see how this will prevent terrorists from crossing the Canadian border when we have THOUSANDS of miles of unguarded border between our countries. To me, this is just another expense that we can ill afford.

So what am I doing to dispel the funk that surrounds us?

Monday, the day we found out my Dad has colon cancer, our pussy-willows popped out. I immediately grabbed my pruning shears and cut 2 bunches, one for us and one for my parents. This sign of re-birth is exactly what we needed.

Last week Z and I planted tomato and flower seeds. Thursday, sprouts of green in our pots brightened our day.

The past 3 yrs we've worked at the structural, and necessary, repairs to our home. This weekend we'll be starting a purely aesthetic project. That's right, in addition to spending our tax refund on replacing the siding on the back of our house, we'll be "prettifying" our kitchen. Fresh paint will be covering the outdated wallpaper that's visible behind the pussy-willows. Then we'll be laying a lovely new, wood-grained, laminate floor. Sometime, before next winter, I'll be sewing new curtains for our refurbished kitchen. Next summer we'll tackle re-staining the cabinets.

Hopefully the fumes of fresh paint will chase the funky black clouds from my head!


At 4/25/2009 10:44 AM, Blogger Hammer said...

I hope your dad has a sucessful surgery and everything else works its self out.

The coming of nicer weather might help.

At 4/25/2009 11:59 AM, Blogger Jeannie said...

Never rains but it pours!

I'm so sorry times have been particularly tough - seems that way for so many right now - the economy and harsh winter hit everyone but then add so many other never ending issues and it becomes overwhelming. I'm always quite amazed at the energy you seem to have to keep up. I know you're tired but you keep on keeping on and that's admirable. I've given up so much home maintenance over the past few years partly out of spite because no one else will do it and they expect that I will. I regret it for sure but it would be nice to get some help.

At 4/25/2009 4:31 PM, Blogger Vancouver Voyeur said...

So sorry this has been a hellacious winter. I hope everything works out well for your dad. The paint and sprucing up does do wonders for the psyche. It's hard work, but the rewards of something new and pretty that you did yourself and saved money doing it, this is why I keep tackling the home improvement projects. It's cheaper than prozac and without all the side effects. :-)

At 4/25/2009 6:59 PM, Blogger Squirl said...

So sorry about your father. Hope things go well. Things really have sucked for you this year.

New growth of plants and new paint are good for the spirits, though.

At 4/26/2009 9:27 AM, Blogger tshsmom said...

Thanks Hammer!

Jeannie, I know exactly how you feel! The only projects I've been tackling have been necessary to prevent further damage to our home, shed, or yard. I'd given up on any prettifying projects.
Enough of that! The kitchen project is all about ME, and my guys will damned well help or there'll be serious hell to pay!

VV, that's exactly how I look at home improvement projects! (Big surprise, huh?)

This project is purely aesthetic, which makes me feel rather sinful. Mind-numbing labor keeps my hands and thoughts busy, so I don't have time to worry or feel sorry for myself. The payoff will, hopefully, be a pretty new kitchen.

Squirl, I'm keeping my mind focused on re-birth right now. I hope it works.

At 4/26/2009 12:43 PM, Blogger Maddy said...

Good grief. It's official. I have nothing to moan about at all. What a horrible dose of real life you have been given. Maybe it's a sign that you've over dosed this year and therefore you are due a decade free of troubles? [I hope]
Best wishes

At 4/27/2009 3:43 PM, Blogger tshsmom said...

Maddy, 10 yrs of good luck sounds great to me!

At 4/27/2009 10:16 PM, Blogger Grizzly Mama said...

Well if the paint fumes don't help, I sure hope that something does help. It's been a long, hard winter and you deserve a break in life. Hope that your father's surgery goes well. BTW, my mother had colon cancer surgery 5 years ago. She's fine now - they have come a long way in that area. God bless.

At 4/28/2009 12:48 PM, Blogger tweetey30 said...

Aww guys big hugs from us girls and I am sorry to hear about all the yaya in your life right now but as soon as you open that can of paint/stain it will all go away.. You will be rejuvinated with life with the fresh clean sent of new paint/stain.. Things will look up soon..

At 4/28/2009 11:09 PM, Blogger SME said...

There's no nice way to put it: this is the shittiest year ever. That "federal agent" who wanted to arrest Wayne has decided to show up for the conference Saturday, like any more lunacy is needed right now.
But I guess we just have to suck it up and keep delighting in the small things.

At 4/29/2009 7:53 PM, Blogger Wandering Coyote said...

Sorry I'm so late to the party. Just getting back into the swing of things...

I'm sorry so much is being dumped on you right now - particularly the health issues with your parents. But if I know you at all, I believe you are incredibly strong and resilient and that you will endure. It's an awful lot of shit to endure, however, and I wish you and your family the best.

At 5/01/2009 7:16 AM, Blogger Laura said...

I'm pulling for you all. There's not much I can say that would make anything any better. I hope things pick up soon. Hang in there.

At 5/02/2009 1:43 AM, Blogger Mike S said...

Give your dad my best wishes from a survivor of both and clear for over 15 years following surgery & a temporary colonostopy.

The living 35 miles from the oft crossed border or having the cards isn't the big problem here; the state has steadfastly refused to be part of the real-id program saying it infringes on our rights. Thank heavens us Injun types from certain border straddling tribes like mine can pass freely without one. i.e.: 'we done need no steenking cards'!! Sadly, Mrs Mike does. Glad she's got a valid passport.

As for the rest, I was gonna offer some trite advice & platitudes until I saw the 'verification word': greeM, sorta summed it all up for me. Not quite fresh & green, but only a little hiccup in the big scheme of things.

Much different if it had been ScotcK, as in 'single-malt'; now THAT would portend disasterous things to be.

At 5/03/2009 11:53 PM, Blogger Jay said...

It's so great to be able to breath some fresh life into a space. Obviously you've been through tough times and they never just stop. But surround yourself with beauty and maybe it will be that much more bearable.

At 5/04/2009 5:41 PM, Blogger Gardenia said...

Oh Gosh - I saw the photo of the stacked up clothing and for a moment thought you were packing to leave! (That is a morbid joke)

Your stress level must be somewhere out there by Pluto - but the creating of new things will be a help.

Check out 5-HTP. I'm going to try it - its supposed to be great for sleep and depression! "H" is on antideppresants now and spends much time sleeping and sitting around staring into space, I'm not sure that's any better than where he was at. Anyway, that passive aggressive stuff can just wear a person out! To the bone. I've spent 36 years trying to figure out how to deal with it. If you find the answer, let me know!

I'm afraid we are just in for stressful years in the future - our world is changing incredibly.

At 5/05/2009 1:23 PM, Blogger The Zombieslayer said...

Wow. It doesn't stop.

Sorry to hear about all this.

Yeah, this economy is in the shits as well so I imagine you've been hit especially hard considering there are no tourists any more.

Keep Z busy. The best way to fight depression is to stay busy and have something to look forward to.

At 5/07/2009 3:03 PM, Blogger Vancouver Voyeur said...

Hey, where you at? Been missing your posts.


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