#WeekendCoffeeShare. I’m a Grown up! Meh.

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Ali. Yay, it’s Saturday!

I’m writing as I eat breakfast, and my beverage will be iced coffee. It has been a strange week with an extra day off Thursday due to storm Eta, which didn’t trouble my neighborhood much except for gray skies.

It’s sunny out, but I have to do some adulting. My car needs service, and it may need struts, which cost a pretty penny and may change my holiday plans. It makes me want to consider a second job. Yuck.

On that topic of adulting, I joined the #agechallenge on social media. It entails being proud of your age and accomplishments. Suffice it to say here, I meet and I am friends with several people who are young enough to be my child. Hopefully, I’m not old enough to be their grandma, but it will happen. So I am like many others who try to not look their age, try to NOT dress their age. I don’t overdo the makeup, because scrubbing eyeshadow and liner off my eyes gives me more eyebags. I exercise quite faithfully.

There is a silver lining that actually sounds a little ironic. My age challenge statement is this:

**I am ___years old. I would’ve already been dead if this was the Middle Ages. Yet, here I am, with time left to figure it all out.**

Yes, like a teenager, I still try to figure out myself, where I’m headed, what works for me, how I can live at peace with others and with my lot in life. They say, “bloom where you’re planted.” Never a dull moment.

It’s clear (or not) from this image I drew a week ago. Everything I am is who I used to be (so , yeah, the free, tree-climbing girl and the awkward pre-teen and confused teenager), but also includes how far I have come today and everything I possibly can be in the future….all rolled up in one and living within my soul at the same time. The future self just sits in wait for us to be ready and to choose what it will be doing. You are sure to see this image again. (Sorry) 🙂

Very wise one day, I shall be. (But I haven’t quite caught up to Yoda yet) 🙂

I need to exercise more, so I can one day be like the old lady who still wears yoga pants and has arm muscles, with a gray braid down her back….so I better grow it. I do not want to be one of the sitting ladies, staring at pigeons on a park bench. I’d rather be wondering and exploring the park, hopefully with a faithful dog by my side!

Somehow I feel I’ve digressed. I should’ve written a philosophical poem….but, it is what it is.

Have a great week, everyone! Don’t swim around in these thoughts for too long, though I’d love to hear yours. ❤

Mind Body Mantra

(C) Pamela Schloesser Canepa

My body is a temple.

It is a source of joy,

Just as a source of pain.

My body is to never be a source of shame.

The tension within is divine

It is a path to joy, as well a warning sign.

The tension only clears

If I can cross that line.

Is it safe to let down my guard?

Will my brain give me that regard?

Will automatic systems yield…

Can past assumptions drop their shield?

I choose harmony between the two

Once achieved, there is much more I can do.

But to achieve it, there is still much I must go through.

****Certain parts of this mantra are more positive while I feel others hit the reality head-on. I plan to focus on the positive portions when needed and return to all other stanzas to honor and respect what I may feel.in any given moment.

Weekend Coffee Share, 8/30. Weird World.

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Ali. I know I’m posting this late, and I’m drinking green tea, not coffee, but you may have whatever you like! I envy those who can drink coffee throughout the day.

Unfortunately, I can only have one cup in the morning, and some days, like today, I only have macha tea. I figure it’s best for my nerves, as I already have slight sciatica acting up and tension in my left hip. I hate relying on Advil and a muscle relaxer. I need to get back to meditation and more regular hot baths. I’ve just been busy lately.  Fortunately, I am getting a massage later!

Back to school has required me to adjust my schedule and still fit in the arm/shoulder exercises with cardio 3-4 times weekly. I still take time to read but have a hard time sitting down to write when the sciatica gets worse if I sit too much. My current read is awesome, about finding my feminine spirituality away from the patriarchal church. I’m inspired by it!

You’re sure to hear more from me on toppling the patriarchy.  If you are a woman or a man who feels there’s no problem, maybe there is not for you. Haven’t you seen news reports of college guys who only get months of probation for rape?  Don’t you know a woman who has beat herself up because she couldn’t make her marriage work or change her husband with her loving ways?  Or because her religion made her feel like a Jezebel if she thought of leaving.  Let me tell you, the patriarchy was strongly ingrained into my dad’s head, and it came out in his words and attitude when he was frequently drunk as I grew up as a child.  It was strongly ingrained into my husband’s head too, and yes, even in mine as I was raised to accept this from a man and mistook his jealousy for love and accepted the possessive nature of his relationship with me…..until I couldn’t any more.  My childhood church taught me how I should be as a wife and a woman; it was unhealthy.  The main thread was SHAME.  So I have plenty to say.  This book and writing on this topic is so cathartic for me.  You can, if you’re so inclined, read my recent post on the topic here:  Lies Women (and Girls) are Told

Thus, in the meantime, I’m keeping my PPE on, avoiding germs, avoiding news of the COVID-19 numbers but staying safe, and trying to make students smile in this weird, weird world.

I still have plenty to say, and the mask won’t stop me.

Weekend Coffee Share. I Feel Good!

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Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Ali!  My coffee is still brewing, please give me a moment….

Pull up a chair and grab a cup of whatever gets you going!  As I was saying, I feel good, I wasn’t sure that I would… However, I feel like I am slowly leaving the club of overthinkers, OCD sufferers, etc.  Intentionally; it has taken some work!  Sleep was spotty last night, but I woke up to drive my son to work feeling good about life.  Maybe it is just that all of the techniques I’ve been trying are finally coming together and working.  In fact, sleep is my main complaint right now, but I feel okay waking up.

In the last week, I have: *visited an orthopedic surgeon. No surgery recommended! I have frozen shoulder, and he’s suggesting a shot to the shoulder joint. It is now scheduled for next Tuesday. Maybe it’ll help me sleep better!

*Attended physical therapy twice. On Thursday, he moved me to more strength-building exercises, and I was quite sore the next day, but I still feel good about it! This can help keep me healthy. My plan is to stay active the rest of my life.

*Gone to the beach for a 35 min. walk with my son.  It was peaceful and awesome! First beach visit this summer; certainly not the last! I find walking on the beach to be very meditative, and it puts me in a state of gratitude.

*Written a little of my upcoming book, Ellie, the Time Traveler and edited my short story, Crossroads Diner #225.

Ellie60163761_2307068182890086_4478659740125102080_n Ellie is a mysterious character who surfaced in Undercurrents in Time and haunts the main character in Malachi, Ruse Master.

*Watched a FOUR and 1/2 HOUR school board meeting, whereby they decided to delay school start until 8/20 (It had been 8/10) and start with staggering the days for middle and high school, yet elementary gets 5 days of instruction.  Parents can opt for their kids to get fully online learning.  People have many differing opinions on this, but remember, kids in school are a hotbed of germs, and Florida is currently a hotbed for COVID-19. I myself have bought face shields, masks and scrubs that I can wash right on my return home.  I also plan to get tested for COVID weekly.  I hate that the meeting took so long; I had to sit for more than four hours straight with bated breath.  *sigh*  I just had to hear the decision.  It directly affects my life.

*Went to the chiropractor for my spine health and enjoyed the hydra-bed and EMS for neck and shoulder.  As you have probably inferred, it takes a village to straighten me out or to keep me straight!  But I am getting into a good frame of mind for a new school year that promises to be super-weird and possibly stress-inducing, and I feel great about myself!

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I am also fully convinced I can handle it all.  How was your week?  Enjoy your weekend, everyone!

Weekend Coffee Share, 7/04/20. Liberty and Justice for all!

Happy 4th of July, and welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share!  It has been so hot here in Northeast Florida.  Grab your favorite beverage; I’ve got the AC on high!

This week has been relaxing, yet challenging. I started off with a physical therapy appointment, then had a relaxing coffee get together with a writer friend at my house.  The physical therapy IS, at times, challenging.  More on that later. The coffee was mostly relaxing; we talk about where we are in our current works in progress and what our plans may be. I talk a lot about my shoulder because it has slowed down my writing and my time at the computer. We talked about our loved ones: her grandson and my son.  We can talk for hours! I rarely do stuff like this anymore.  Don’t worry, we were at a good social distance in my house, and I played some good jazz in the background. 🙂

I am making progress with the shoulder. With the guidance of my physical therapist, I am now able to place my hand on my hip.  He encouraged me to move my right hand and arm behind my back, something which I have not done in a very long time and would not have on my own. To think, I used to be able, just 3 or 4 years ago, to reach both hands behind my back in the prayer hands position.  Not any more.  But I’m gradually working through the pain.  I often come back from physical therapy ready for a nap. That is okay! My hard work is paying off! I will get my mobility and capabilities back. I have goals: axe throwing for one.  I may or may not be kidding. We shall see!  I also plan to be able to do more upper body yoga moves, without having to modify so much.  I do have an appt. with an orthopedic surgeon on 7/21.  My hope is that I don’t need surgery that badly.  I will be working hard on my mobility until then!

Of course, COVID-19 gives me a little anxiety and on days it really bugs me, I feel so obsessive-compulsive.  It’s not every day, though. I do still get hot flashes at times, and one day, that led me to take my temperature five times until it finally appeared to be lower.  What is going on with me?  There were no other symptoms.  What doesn’t help, is that our governor is bound and determined that kids will physically be in school to start the year in August.  At my least check, we had 166,000 COVID cases in Florida.  My city and county evidently had a big rise in cases yesterday.  I wish I could go to the beach this weekend, but I probably won’t. I do plan to go Georgia with my boyfriend and see his dad.  I plan to be careful and not catch COVID. I don’t think it is prudent or careful to have all these kids in school. Yet, the district has spent money on plastic dividers.  I guess they’re not even considering us being online for a while.  WHATEVER! I’ll get through it. My friend suggested wearing scrubs, which wash easily, instead of our good clothes. That may be a plan.

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I hope all is well with you all.  We can survive this.  We can even thrive in our own ways. Though I am not writing as much, I am journaling daily to help myself mentally not just deal with, but overcome the pain.  I bought sidewalk chalk and drew little pictures outside my front door.  I plan to do more of this, as well as making a miniature living room out of playdough. 🙂  

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Photo by Aaron Schwartz on Pexels.com

If you’d like to learn more about my books; the first two in the Detours in Time series are just .99 in Kindle format through Sunday.  Click here: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0711ZW6XF (Detours in Time), or  Book 2 (Undercurrents in Time) at  https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07DCCQS3N .

Have a great week, and a happy, safe Independence Day!  I feel us gradually moving closer to “Justice for all.” May the tides keep turning that way, and may we hold true to our promises as a nation. 

 

 

Weekend Coffee Share, Top Ten ‘What’s Up’ in My Life

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Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Ali.  You know when people ask you “what’s up” and you say “Nothin'” or “not much,” but you know you’re lying and they know or they didn’t even mean it when they ask you “what’s up?” Let’s not do that.  Sit a  while, sip your favorite beverage, chat, and listen.

What’s up with me?

  1.  Went to Santee South Carolina with my boyfriend and mom yesterday to meet my brother and his wife at a state park for a picnic.  They took Mom home with them to NC for a few days.  It was beautiful and we all enjoyed it until it started raining and the wind blowing with almost hurricane force. We made it back home in clear skies, though. It was a good day trip.
  2. My grown son was, as a result, on his own to get to and from work yesterday driving my mother’s car. He made it back without event.
  3. The aforementioned son of mine texted me in the afternoon to ask when we were getting back.  By gosh, I think he missed me. The dog obviously did, but my son made it known in his subtle ways.
  4. COVID cases are really rising in my state of Florida.  I think I am being pretty safe, I just wish they’d find a vaccine already.
  5. I finally was able to get an MRI for my shoulder.  (Honestly, it should have happened sooner so I would know what limits to set for myself).  My insurance did not approve the request back in Dec. and required me to go through some hoops first. I should have pushed for it back then.  It turns out there is a partial tear and some other arthritic in the AC. The doc wants me to see an orthopedic surgeon for an opinion. I’m not going to share my feelings on this just yet, but a less invasive solution is my hope.
  6. I caved and got a steroid shot for said shoulder. The shot hurt, but I felt better later. I’m icing it a lot and did not drive much on the way to SC. Luckily, the boyfriend was willing to drive more.
  7. I’ve been reading books about healing and visualization is one form of self-encouragement and relaxation. So I visualize a vampire fairy, yes, that’s what I said, biting my arm which is always stiff due to tension or perhaps self-protection because of my shoulder. It will bite me much like a mosquito, and take out all negative energy that causes me stiffness and pain.  Said fairy will then fly off to the ocean and vomit it out. (It has to go somewhere). Of course, it stirs up a storm there, but we end up getting rain for days on end. No worse that acid rain. In fact, it will lose its negative energy the more it pours down, and I will have no tension and much less pain.  Where did you all think rain came from?  Oh, never mind.

Writing Status

8.  I have randomly been working on a rough draft for my next book in the Detours in Time universe, based on Ellie from the last two Detours in Time books. Like Malachi, she is one of those characters that has really stuck with me.  Well, I visualized and wrote the ending.  The beginning and middle are not fleshed out, but at least I can go forward with the end in mind! It is kind of exciting, now that I think about it.

9.  Just like that, I have a voice narrator for my most recent book, Malachi Ruse Master!  He is currently working on the 15 minute sample. I’ll be sure to keep you updated as we go along.

10.  Does anyone know where I can publish a short story that I think is really good?  I’ve found and entered 1 online contest, and searched other story sites but cannot see myself boxing the story into a limited amount of space or words.  It’s not long, but it is beautiful and mysterious as it is; I do not want to change it to fit tight specifications. Still, I want to share it with the world, and the new Twilight Zone is no longer taking submissions for possible publication on screen.  😦  Ideas anyone?

 

So, there you have it.  I may have left some details untouched, but you definitely have an idea of what is up with me!  I skipped Coffee Share last week, so there was some catching up to do, and the ‘top ten’ format helped me focus.  I hope you have a great weekend and upcoming week! How is life in your world?

Weekend Coffee Share: Set back, but Still Moving Forward

 

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Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Ali.  It’s half-caff for me today, and whatever you would like, since we are doing this virtually.

I’ve had a slight personal setback, but it won’t stop me.  After a slight accidental discovery 2 weeks ago (that I cannot do exercises that involve my arms above my head with a 3-pound weight), I consulted the doctor yesterday. It has been hurting for this full two weeks, and my mobility seems even more limited in that arm.  The doc says I have a rotator cuff impingement. It does not feel good. I’ll be taking Prednisone for a few days hoping to avoid a steroid shot. I have to go light on the weights, but I’ll just find new ways to move this arm and shoulder. He showed me some stretches I should do that do not involve weights.  I’ll still do online pilates barre tomorrow, just without weights. 

We also had a scare this last week.  My mom had horrible heartburn and pain in her chest.  She said ‘It’s just my esophagus, I’m sure,’ but I insisted she call the doctor Monday.  They said she’d better go to the ER, ‘just in case’ there was something going on with her heart. At the ER, they decided she needed a stress test, so she waited overnight at the hospital in a room. Her test was in the morning, results didn’t come back until after noon, but her heart was fine.  She has to see a surgeon about her gallstones, though. We’re just thankful it is not her heart! With all of this social distancing, I feel really close to my family in my home.  Sadly, I could not visit her in the room.  I am just glad that little scare is over!

In book news, my most recent book,  Malachi, Ruse Master got its first, and it is 5 stars!  This same reviewer stated that I seem to have made an “artistic leap” with this one, and I find that quite a compliment!

Malachiadvert instagram pam malachi 2[6]

“Malachi is a living, breathing character, likable, flawed, believable, who grows in wisdom page by page. I lived his adventures with him, sympathizing with him as he faced his dilemmas.

I read almost the entire book in one sitting, stopping only after midnight had come and gone. Now I look forward to Pamela’s next book.

I heartily recommend this book. If you have not yet read the Detours in Time series read this first. Then look for Malachi again.” -Steven, Amazon Review

Malachi, Ruse Master is deeply character driven and connects to Detours in Time book 2 (Undercurrents).  As the reviewer stated, you wouldn’t need to read any of the others first.  There is a lot of mystery in Malachi, Ruse Master and just a hint of sci-fi; it is telling Malachi’s story. He’s a twenty-year-old trying to find his way and his place in life.  What ensues is quite a roller-coaster ride!  You might like it.  Find it here:


https://www.amazon.com/Malachi-Ruse-Master-Character-Spin-off-ebook/dp/B086VYJYZX

I thank you for stopping by and reading my blog post! How was your week? 

Weekend Coffee Share. This Little Bird’s Gonna Fly…I Hope.

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Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Antoinette Truglio Martin. Can I just say, thank God for weekends!

I was in such bliss waking up at 7 this morning knowing I didn’t have to put my brain in overdrive getting ready to be somewhere at a specified time or thinking about what I’d do first or what morning meeting I’d have at school. I looked forward to breakfast and coffee, and everyone else at home was asleep. It was silent in my home, silent in my neighborhood, and I managed 7 hours of sleep last night, a miracle, lately. I do a lot of stretching in the morning, exercises at home, and yoga now and then, which I will start more as physical therapy is winding down. It all makes for a peaceful morning that I can stretch out with writing on the laptop and sometimes, yes, tying up less ends for work and making progress on my class for Teaching Gifted students. Right now is a busy time, and I have still been in the process of working on me.

On that note, on Martin Luther King day I invited a new co-worker, a very young woman, to bring her dog to the dog park to play with my Bixby. It went so well, we are going to do it again! She is my son’s age, but why should that stop me? I am so glad I did that. It’s about breaking out of usual limits we put on ourselves.

Of course, Bixby loved it too!

I saw my doctor this last week and we discussed many things: sleeplessness, menopause, my progress with my shoulder and physical therapy. He’s offering a prescription for the sleep, and I’m going to think about it first. I think I’ve made good progress with the physical therapy and will likely write about that on my blog as well. As this process went on, I’ve been educating myself and researching about the brain and pain, anxiety and its effects on our thinking. I am emerging from physical therapy much stronger, so let me just tell you, it works. However, I not only needed help with my body and strength, but also with my mindset. I received that as well in the most subtle of ways. As a result, I am a firm believer in physical therapy as a method for dealing with or recovering from pain. As I said, I plan to write about this and some of the things I learned about myself through this process. I have one more appt, and then I will be the baby bird nudged out of the nest. I am ready to go on to the next thing, or just to discover what is the next way I can keep myself on the path to getting stronger and believing in myself. My doctor says an MRI is not necessary now, which works for me, as I like avoiding visits to the hospital! My goal is to continue doing intentional things to keep my upper body strong and not allow it to go back to the pain cycle; may any pain that comes now simply be growing pain. I am already keeping up with lower body stretches and will continue, perhaps challenging myself with barre class or cardio yoga.

Just for fun, here is what I’ve been researching about the mind:

-Is counting a form of OCD

-Other side effects of menopause

-How safe is Ambien? (because I’m not sure I want that prescription)

-Anxiety and memory loss

-physical therapy stories

-pain and trauma

-pain and the brain

-CBT

Yes, sometimes I am heavy handed with my over-thinking. But don’t worry, this little bird is gonna fly. As you should know, if you have ever met me or read my writing or blog posts, I am very capable in the area of imagination and fantasy, and half of the battle is believing that you can!

Photo via Pixabay.

Stay light, my friends. Have a great week!

Weekend Coffee Share, Of Pain and Growth

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Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Antoinette.  https://antoinettetrugliomartin.com/2020/01/10/winter-on-hilton-head-island/                Pull up a chair and drink whatever you like!

If we were having coffee today, I’d be drinking a half-caff hazelnut.  Half seems to work best for me these days, I am trying to work on maintaining a calmer spirit. I might be brief today, as I have a hair appointment that mainly serves the purpose of making my hair easier to maintain.

I feel like I am growing as a person, and physical therapy is making me feel stronger.  I’m realizing that, for a long time, I have stuffed negative emotions down in areas of my body, currently, the lower back and shoulder.  But I’ve made progress and have been able to complete every pose in Zen yoga for the last two visits, and that makes me proud.  My job stresses me out all the time, as there are certain things I want to do right, yet I am pushed to ‘get them done’ in small amounts of time.  Yet, most of my students delight me.  I love watching them grow.  One of them still makes origami animals for me, and I enjoy it so much; I started giving him candy when he brings me something awesome.  I feel it is right to reward someone who wants to share their talent to make me smile.  I am working on an end of the year poem to give to all of them.  I know, it’s way ahead of that, but I am still sleeping at a shortened amount of time so my brain must do something, and I will not let it constantly worry.  There is so much beauty in this world!

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In stressful times, I decided to use a go-to scenario involving Jimi Hendrix singing for me.  He is my latest obsession which is much better than obsessing about my health.  Anyway, he sings, and I have turned into a butterfly; I am limitless and indomitable, feeling no fear.  That’s for when I need to relax, because sometimes I am still very tense, though I am working on that.  I suppose this tensing is a defense mechanism that actually, overall, hurts me in the long run.

In the writing area, I have finished Malachi and have sent it off to the editor.  I have gotten the book cover done and there will be a cover reveal soon!   It is at about 170 pages.  My negative inner voice tells me that isn’t enough.  My other voice tells me his story is completed; Ellie is entering the picture now and wants the spotlight.  There is a lot between those two, so it will be in the book after that.  I need to have faith in myself.  I haven’t worked on fiction in about two weeks; I’m writing a lot about my growth process, dealing with anxiety and trying to grow through the arthritis pain.  Who knew dealing with physical pain had so much to do with mental health? I published a short poem to my son about some of this, as he has had many struggles already in his short life.  You can find it here:  https://pamelascanepa.wordpress.com/2020/01/09/for-my-son-poetry/

That is all for today.  It is beautiful outside here in the Southeast!  I’m going to exercise a little before the hair appointment, and hopefully, have a carefree day.  How are things in your corner of the world?

Weekend Coffee Share. Summer Goals!

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Ali. This is the week I started my true relaxation and “detox” from stress, including occasional half-cup-of coffee days. I’m writing here and there, but I have no set deadlines this summer.

I do have goals, though. Staying healthy and not feeling stiff or pained every day are two of the biggest. The issue came up last week when my boyfriend and I went on a four hour drive to the memorial for my best friend’s husband. I get stiff just from sitting in a car for those few hours, and we came back the next afternoon.

 Friends are also family.

It was an emotional visit, but this visit was also very life-affirming. I’ve known my friend since age 13. We know so much about each other and have seen each other through some really hard times. We’ve been separated many times by circumstances and distance. Her second husband recently became ill and was hospitalized at the end. He was one of the best husbands in my opinion, even though I only met him once. She loved him very much, and everything she said at the memorial just showed she was full of appreciation for her time with him and relief that his pain was over.  In other words, she was not a basket case at all.  Her husband, whom she has known five to six years and been married to for three, had been sick in the last two years.  Near the end, he developed a rare disease, calciphylaxis, and was in the hospital for most of this last year.  It breaks my heart, but in talking with her I could see that she wasn’t dwelling on the sorrow, and instead was focusing on the wonderful times they had together.  I want to make sure to go and see her or spend time with her more often.

After returning, I’ve been setting a lot of appointments this week.  Routine stuff, and I made it to yoga twice in one week!  I felt great after yesterday’s class, but I feel sore today, so maybe I just have to get used to it.  I also went and tried out a place called Stretch Zone that does assisted stretch.  I decided I’d go back, so I purchased a month’s package to see how I improve after that month.  “Spend all you have for loveliness,” someone said, somewhere.  I used to spend it on vacations and concerts, now I am having to invest in being healthy and a whole person.  In my opinion, well worth it!  It’ll make my next vacation more enjoyable.  I also took my furbaby to get a haircut yesterday.  Yeah, he knows he’s handsome. 🙂

Beside that and binge-watching The Handmaid’s Tale, I’ve been working with a narrator to get Detours in Time onto audio, and after that, Undercurrents in Time as well! I’m trying to finish the Malachi manuscript, but I find I get pretty stiff when sitting in the same place for too long (as mentioned above).  Sometimes I stand near the kitchen counter and type.   I will be posting some brief excerpts in the next week or two!  In reading, I’m alternating between a Kindle book and its audio. That seems to work with my goal of not being too still. Please pray for me so I can get this book finished!  I think I am incorporating a good plan to keep moving.

I hope you all have a great week and are enjoying your summer. Happy Pride month to those of you who are, or have a friend or loved one that is, LGBTQ.  Happy summer to all!

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