Weekend Coffee Share, Downtime

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Natalie the Explorer. Here is a place where I don’t drink coffee, but you certainly can. My chai latte, however, was pretty satisfying this morning.

I hope you all had a blessed and enjoyable Thanksgiving. My mom went up North to spend time with my brother, his wife, and his in-laws. At my son’s request, I planned a visit to Cracker Barrel for him, myself, and his father, my ex-husband. My boyfriend wasn’t ready for that, so he went to a basketball convention in Orlando. I expected an awkward Thanksgiving, but it was relatively quiet, and we were there and support of our son. It worked.

The wait at Cracker Barrel -shorter than expected!

My son and I had some quality time walking with the dog before the early dinner, and there was no rush. He and I had good leftovers Wednesday night and watched a lot of Blacklist in Netflix. Spader is such an awesome actor! One thing I love about Thanksgiving is time with family. I didn’t have all of my family, but I enjoyed the quality time with my son and my dog, Bixby!

The only shopping I did yesterday was online. I felt good staying out of the stores. My boyfriend got back from Orlando yesterday morning, and he and I had dinner with my son last night, which was nice. I’ve gotten a few hints of ideas for the Ellie manuscript, and my boyfriend Chris has been helping me with that by asking clarifying questions. He really wants to see this come to fruition! So much has gone on and distracted my focus in the last two years. I’m still looking into ways to deal with my arthritis pain.

Today, I’ll have a massage and somehow try to get a 30 minute walk or bike ride. I’m committed to 30 minute cardio three days a week, and I sometimes get more. This is in addition to the work/ therapy on my shoulder, which includes arm exercises.

So there’s my weekend in a nutshell. Lots of relaxation and time with people I love (including Bixby). It can’t get much better! This is what I needed right now. Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!

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Gratitude reminder #538

Because sometimes I need reminders, and because it easily flips the switch:

When I’m tired after a workday and my arm and shoulder both hurt, I remember I’m grateful to have a job. I may have to lay down and relax for 15 minutes, but then, I’m grateful that I can get up and exercise through the pain, and for that I shall rejoice.

I am grateful for the sunshine we had after the storm this weekend, and when that happens, I will slow down and greet the sunshine with thankful eyes, giving it time to soak into my skin. I’m grateful I can still travel, and I will give myself time to enjoy the fun and also time to rest and relax.

While I may still be working for much of the remainder of my life, I need not be driven anymore to achieve or to chase after carrots. There is nothing, I repeat nothing in this world that I need to chase after.

I now abolish the rat race from my life and my mind. Everything I need Is right here; I simply need to nourish it, appreciate it, show it love, and take the time to enjoy and surround myself in it.

Signed,

PC

My cuddling and lounging buddy!

Weekend Coffee Share, This Week I…

Spent a lot of time with my dog. I was home from Wednesday on, preparing for a hurricane.

Made it through the wind and rain unscathed. Only my neighbor’s mango tree was struck down, but they revived it and tied it in place securely.

Celebrated my son at One Night Taco Stand with some excellent pork tacos and a skinny margarita during hurricane prep day. He completed orientation for a new job last week and seems to love it!

Started up PT again for my shoulder. I went back to the location by my job, and I’m feeling optimistic about it.

Walked my dog in the wind and rain several times. I got pretty bored, and he had to do his thing, so hey, we both got some exercise too!

Shaking off the rain!

Suffered pain in my arm and hand. The shoulder bugs me at certain times, but today, the hand and arm were constant. I DON’T KNOW WHY. I’m getting tired of tests, x-rays, MRIs. Ice distracts me from the sensation, so there’s that.

Sat in the sun during breakfast this morning, and later in the afternoon. It felt so GOOD after days of just gray skies. My drink this morning was chai tea with almond milk. I do hope you’re having a great weekend, and I’m sorry I didn’t make it to the chat during coffee hour this morning. Thanks for stopping by!

Weekend Coffee Share , in Metaphors

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Natalie the Explorer. I’m moving like a conversation with a true Southern grandma on a hot porch. So I guess this calls for tea. 🙂 Have whatever you like.

Part of this long conversation on the porch would include long pauses, allowing one to take in the scenery, which is beautiful. It’s not the Mexican Riviera, but it is beautiful nonetheless. If you decide to love your life, it must be an unconditional embrace of the ups and downs and quiet moments of greenery, sunshine, or moonlight. In my humble opinion. 🙂

Chai tea the way I like it on the porch.

Yes, my first week of school went smoothly with the students, but I had a setback with the shoulder that involved more inflammation in my shoulder, arm, and hand. I have to use a computer at work but do so sparingly. I’m asking others for help with carrying heavy things and writing on the board. So, this is still a mystery. I will say that I seem to benefit from the energy of my 6th grade students and younger colleagues, so I’m grateful for that! Humor is an elixir that helps me survive each day.

An appointment in 10 days should give me some answers on the shoulder situation. I was quite teed at my primary doc’s office for never answering the phone this week and headed to a Care spot instead for help with the inflammation.

I feel like the man in the movie who only had 100 words left to speak for the rest of his entire life. He had to make them count. So, that’s my excuse for keeping this short. Honestly, I just woke up and started this on my phone. Half of it is through text to speech. LOL. I guess one benefit of text to speech is that it forces a person to really speak clearly or there will be a lot of ” typos.”

Oh well, I was able to sleep in late today and wake with my dog, my canine sympatico, at the foot of the bed. So I thought I’d keep this short, but it doesn’t seem that short. Such are the best laid plans of mice and men.

How was your week?

Weekend Coffee Share , Back to School issue

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Natalie the Explorer. It’s green tea for me today. Grab your favorite beverage and let’s have a little chat!

I’m on a health kick lately, hence the green tea. The frozen shoulder has not yet resolved in 3 weeks of PT, and that bothers me because school starts Monday. My range of motion is really improved, but the pain and discomfort keep me up at night. I need my energy to keep up with the kids! I have some appointments coming up. Hopefully, I’ll get some answers or a new plan of attack.

Don’t hug my bum shoulder, please. Don’t nudge my right arm. Yeah, this might be awkward.

At any rate, it was good to see some of my coworkers again, and to meet a few new ones. Some of us are like family, we’ve known each other for so long! I’m running the same clubs again, but streamlining the processes, and I have a few people who have offered to help. That is a wonderful thing!

I took a lot less time setting up my room, because I’m being sort of minimalist. Stapling things on the wall hurts my arm and my shoulder. However, I think it looks great as it is, and that it looks good enough. Most of the learning that will occur is not based on what is hanging on my wall anyhow. There’s lots of chart paper though, and students will be able to make use of that to create their own wall decoration. 🙂

Well, that’s what’s going on in my world. I’ll keep this fairly short so I can save my hand from feeling worn out. I got a massage earlier, which really relaxed me, as I think that is the best way to head into this new school year.

Have a great weekend, and thank you for stopping by!

Weekend Coffee Share, Surprises or Subtle Transformations

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Natalie the Explorer. Come sit on the back porch with me for your morning beverage of choice. It promises to be a slow-moving, sticky Southern day here in North Florida. What would we discuss if we were having coffee today?

Well, Bixby has sniffed around and has already retreated to the house . He certainly doesn’t miss his stray-dog days! Though, he likely will come out again. My drink of choice today is cold, green matcha tea. I am allowing myself to move quite slowly. I hope you don’t mind the pace. Stop a while and relax. I have cardio later, but it can wait!

I’ve had plenty of time lately to take in my surroundings, to stop and smell the roses. Sitting on the porch provides a lot of lovely views of nature. I haven’t seen as many birds lately, but there are other sights.

I’ll be praising the rain again later today. It sure pleases the plants!

This week, I did a little bit of writing for continuation of my short story, Crossroads Diner #205. I hope to extend it to novella-length. Again, slow-going, but I am not fretting over that. I’m allowing myself to move when the muse moves me, and to work on other things when it doesn’t. I am still journaling daily this summer as I eat a slow, relaxed breakfast. It is so good for my relaxation levels.

My journaling experience is accompanied by affirmations by Louise Hay in her journal titled A Garden of Thoughts. Coincidentally, I’m taking an online course on teaching students with special needs, and we are currently learning about Growth Mindset, a very important thing, and I am feeling more enthusiastic about my job and this training than I thought…but let me tell you about my growth in regards to journaling.

Journaling is a part of many self-help programs: AA, chronic pain (TMS) sufferers, etc., because self-reflection helps a person look at how they dealt with things in the past and how they can change it. I am an adult child of an alcoholic and a chronic pain sufferer. Admittedly, I still suffer frequent arthritis pain, and just saw the doctor for a steroid shot in my shoulder this Wednesday. The journaling has really helped my mindset. I’ve often in the past felt like I was less of a person or didn’t deserve great things, that it was just the way it was. That I was limited. I think I addressed the shoulder pro-actively, as I plan to stay active and now I’m stretching it a little more each day.

Breaking out of self-limiting mindset is extremely important. Each of the affirmations in A Garden of Thoughts is highly positive, and I can’t always believe all of them, but I have my own take on them, and I am glad to see the words. For example, today’s affirmation: “I celebrate today, another precious day on Earth. I shall live it with joy. Today I am a new person.” Yet, I just couldn’t agree that today I was, or even ever needed to be a new person. Still, I am not the same-old me. I am much more relaxed than I was six weeks ago, no surprise there.

It does feel like I’m celebrating every day by taking time to smell the roses. This is something that summer provides me, so it’s not entirely new; it is cyclical. I am so habitual. I have my routines: a slow breakfast of cereal heaped high with fruit, a little turmeric powder on top, and more recently, Reiki music during breakfast, and the journaling habit which helps me stay off the computer until after breakfast.* I do feel my stress and intensity melting away a little more each day. My thoughts are: “Today, I am even a little more self-accepting; today I am just a little more grateful, less fearful, and more in love with my lot in life. ”

Each day, I am growing less rigid about outcomes and more determined to enjoy the journey and those who are with me on this journey. I am setting my expectations free, because now is a break from the rat race, so this is the time to do so, and I am getting better at that gradually with each passing day.

No big, sudden surprises, but the gradual realization that I am in love, that I love myself even more, and that I can handle this world and this life, perhaps even handle it well! I’ll continue to celebrate it daily. Perhaps when I return to the ‘rat-race’ this fall, I will maintain this mindset.

Thank you visiting me for a coffee (or tea) chat. What’s new with you?

Weekend Coffee Share, Health: Body and Mind

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Natalie at https://natalietheexplorer.home.blog/

It’s 9:59 a.m. here in Jacksonville, Florida and sitting at about 50 degrees. Nonetheless, our Florida sun is shining vigorously. My coffee is half-caff with almond milk and honey. Have whatever you like and join in the conversation!

Please excuse my bedhead, however. 🙂 I slept until 9:30 this morning. Sleep: what a glorious thing it is! There was a brief wake-up when I heard my son’s alarm and his shower running. I had to take the phone and knock on the bathroom door so he would make it stop; evidently I don’t know how. He was out the door and went to the gym. I returned to the world of dreams. I needed that sleep. Work has been hectic and life with my grown son at home has been taxing.

He’s moving out next week. This should be a good thing for my stress levels. However, he has been bullheaded and agitated leading up to this move. His move was at my request, though I thought he’d take a few months to save up. He won’t be far away, so that’s good. Still, he is increasingly irritated when I ask questions or give him reminders, as if he is offended and just can’t wait to get away from me. Well, I worry. I’ll have to give myself a number, and that is the number of times I’m allowed to contact him during the week. Only one or two, and I’ll have to stick to it, because I know it’s better for my own health and well-being. There have been too many near-misses, mishaps, ER visits and accidents that I have seen him through. You may be thinking, I see why you worry then. However, he’ll be twenty-five in two weeks. It is time for his next phase, and I can just hope he will step up and show more maturity with spending and responsibility to take care of himself.

I am one of those people who can get really tense, and I’ve been feeling that. It leads to more aches and pains, something I’m quite familiar with, having had several of my own injuries and in the last few years, having been diagnosed with arthritis and now, poly-arthritis. I was tested for RA and it came up negative, which is good. I’ve had my share of accidents and slips that may lead to recurring pain as well. I’ve read a lot about healing and dealing with emotions that may have surrounded an incident. I’m trying. I don’t think the pain is strictly emotional, but that these things react to each other. Part of my healing is likely dealing with past emotions and putting them in their place (which is a raging, burning dumpster that I will send off into a mysterious river by night).

My childhood emotions aside, and the numerous times of teen imbalance when I just fell off of stairs out of the blue aside, the first thing I remember is a car accident with my friend driving at age 20 when my head hit her windshield. I had no seatbelt on. I seemed okay, the paramedic said I looked catatonic, but no medical treatment. I made a little crack on her windshield.

When I was 24, living in Tulsa during my ill-fated engagement before my ill-fated marriage, I slipped and fell on my back on some ice. Also at this time, I caught a TV on my knee at work when a fellow salesman was trying to hook it up and it slipped out of the cabinet. I had gotten on my knees hoping to catch it with my hands and use my knee as backup. Stupid things we do in our youth, you know. My not reporting it was also stupid.

At age 25, I was married, and my husband was driving the car behind a foolish young girl who kept breaking. He sped to get in front of her. We had to stop in a long line of cars, but she just barreled into the back of us, and we had a ten car fender bender. I got x-rays and had physical therapy that time.

Let’s make a long story short, and I’ll sum it up with, a few more car accidents, one of them in 2016 setting off anxiety in me and possibly causing some lingering claustrophobia. Then, there’s the one my son was in that landed him in trauma and ICU for a few days with a head injury. I was not involved, but waiting in the ER with no word of his condition for a few hours and then hearing the details of the accident caused me to envision it all in my mind, and how it could have ended up differently. He suffers no recall of the actual accident to this day.

My sidekick and source of relaxation and play. Circa 2016

Until a few moments ago, I had written event by event, and then my laptop froze, forcing me to exit out and come back into WordPress to finish. I’ve lost a few paragraphs. Maybe it helped me to get it all out but would not have helped my readers. Suffice it to say, the physical injuries we sustain are not as harmful until we emotionally take them to heart. Our emotional reaction to our injuries can impede our healing. Dealing with our emotions can really aid our physical healing.

I’ve spent a few days this week starting my morning with morning meditations through the DARE app (for addressing anxiety) and Youtube videos of positive affirmations involving gratitude for everything that is wonderful. I had no idea my post today would seem as dark as it is, but sometimes you throw the bottle into the ocean and it goes its own way, goes with the tides, or takes a path determined by fate. I do see the need for more gratitude. I promise you I will soon write the post, as it is long overdue. Now I am trying to get motivated to get my exercise in today.

Thank you for bearing with me as the subject took a turn today. I suppose it’s what I needed to talk about. What are you going through? Perhaps some of you can relate to my struggles as of late. I am not fearful; I am making progress. There is hope in that! Have a great Easter weekend, and enjoy the holiday or the coming of Spring, whichever you celebrate.

#RDP The Path Ahead

 

asphalt dark dawn endless
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

 

(c) 2020

The path ahead is clear

I see it in front of me.

I don’t know which turn to take

I don’t know exactly what to do;

but I do know I will just

move forward.

 

*PS- The nation is burning, many Americans are angry and hurting, and I am feeling that in my heart as well.  Still, my words are scarce and my mind foggy. I do hope you find some meaning in the poem.  I have been dealing with pain again and just saw the doctor days ago for a more specific path to healing and improvement.  I will follow his recommendations and report back.  I tend to put these things off, but I’m glad I finally sought help again.  My unclear thoughts needed the free frame of a poem today to express myself. Thank you, RDP!

 

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, an Island

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“No man is an island” -John Dunne

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at Eclecti Ali. It has been another week full of Live meetings with my sixth graders, the usual online teacher stuff, a broken down computer, and self-publishing a book, which made for a happy break from loneliness or monotony. So, I ordered a new laptop. I use the work laptop, but the microphone does not work, and I’ve been too lazy to take it in to the designated repair center. I’m happy about the new book. One regular reader has told me I’ve taken an “artistic leap,” as it focuses on one character, a young man going through his identity crisis after dropping out of college and obtaining a job where lies and pretending earn his pay.. Give it a look if you like! it intersects with some characters and events from undercurrents in time, but it can also stand on its own.

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https://www.amazon.com/dp/B086VYJYZX

In the last month, I’ve had a pain flare-up, likely due to stress and fear. The news stirs my fear, and going to the grocery store in a mask is weird, but I do it. I feel like I have severe OCD, anxiety, paranoia, and agorophobia. Well, 80% of the world also does right now. I do have arthritis, but there may also be something else. I did so well after physical therapy at the start of this year, but the pain is back intermittently, and I aggravated it by going gung-ho two weeks ago trying a new exercise with light weights. Turns out I should not ever lift anything above shoulder level. 😦 No one told me that; I had to learn the hard way. )

It is relevant that I am currently reading something by Sarno about the Mind-Body Connection. It’s quite interesting, about how emotions or past trauma can cause or prolong chronic pain. Also, certain personality types are more prone to tension-myositis. When I explore these ideas, I feel more in control. Though, I am not really, but I feel it becomes possible.

Family

I am blessed that I have my family here, though. My 78 year old mother, and my 24 year old son. He had his birthday last Sunday and we took a walk in a park just he and I, then came home and my boyfriend came over and we all ordered a great meal from Outback. I bought a cheesecake the day before, so we pigged out on all of that. My dog is also great company in these times; he seems to enjoy having us here, since Mom and I are always here, and my son is here a few days a week since he is working between 20 to 30 hours a week.

My dog has been anxious, though. Perhaps it was because of a stormy day the other day. He seemed to really like energy, or maybe he was preoccupied. And when the storm started, he was very on edge. I had walked him for, and noticed stickers and his leg, so I tried to get one out and he snarled and snapped at me. That is unusual. I kept telling him it was okay and then he started licking my hands as if he really felt sorry. He’s really a good dog. His age in dog years right now would be about 58, sort of young to be a cranky old man. But maybe he’s getting arthritis or something like that similar to what’s going on with me.

My mom took him to the vet, and she said everything looked kind of normal but based on what we had told her she was going to do some blood tests. We are still waiting on the results, but also based on what we had told her, she gave him a chewable medicine and I’m just going to call it doggie Prozac. It seems fitting. He’s in really good spirits today, but not really eating much. So, we pray there is nothing really seriously wrong. He was a stray for three years before becoming hours, and I know there were some hard times, it was evident when we first brought him home. I consider him to be a dog with PTSD, God bless him. I love that dog.

Last night I stayed up a little too late watching Homeland on Showtime with my free trial. I am definitely hooked on that show, as it has many twists and turns and OMG moments. It was a treat to myself to binge watch something again, as I can’t do that much during the week. I do try to take at least two yoga classes per week and I exercise on the back porch about two times a week, trying to stay healthy. Balance, right?

As I mentioned before, my arm and shoulder are kind of bugging me today, so I am writing this via speech to text on my phone. I do need to go back and check for errors. I hope you all have as good a week as possible and taken some sunshine. If I have not visited your weekend coffee share today, please feel free to leave your link in the comments area. I can visit your post via my phone. I’m planning to take it easy today. 🙂 Sending a virtual hug!

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