a tale of tails, tenacity, and tedium, as told by me, usually barefoot and bellowing

Saturday, December 31, 2011

My Gift...My Loss

Life has a way of changing us.  It is what life is, constant change.  Some changes are welcomed, others, not so much.

This  past week, I did the best thing I have ever done.

This past week, I did the hardest thing I have ever done.

From the small girl who drew nothing but horses to the woman surrounded by her dreams-come-true,  my life, my soul, yearned for, and reveled in, the company of horses,  yet, I could never overcome my fear of riding.  I rode but the fear never left.

My babies, my dolls will be loved by young people who have never had a proper home until they came to Arkansas Sheriff's Youth Ranch

This decision was not a light one.  Horses in this program never leave.  They are loved and cared for by disadvantaged  youth with constant professional equine-educated supervision.  The horses receive top notch veterinarian care and provide therapy for the young people.

The papers are wet from the tears I shed while writing about each horse, telling about their sweet spots and favorite snacks. All registries are transferred with the i's dotted and the t's crossed.  The horses are gone.

From paper dolls to the mural on my Dreaming Porch to the realities of those dreams, it has been quite a ride.
From miniature horses,
to my big ones,
I have loved them all.
Farewell, my beauties!
If one child learns to trust,
if one child learns to love,
if one child's wall is breached by the love of these horses,
then my gift, my emptiness, will have been worth it.

Happy New Year

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Pat's On Holiday...

    Can't miss Thursday's Things In A Row
 even if Pat is off having fun
 with family and friends.
Pat, I hope your, uh, nose is cold!
A row of toad stools,
a row of clouds in golden skies,
with a row of trees and birds that fly,
and rows of spots as pumpkins dry.

That's the best I can do
with what I've got.
My camera was empty
I took no shots.

Fall Lingers...And I Shoot From The Hip

as the rains fall gently.
Mother Nature knows we need moisture.
It  promotes the growth of autumn things.

Marcy captured the uniqueness of Creation.
...and the rains continued.

Okay, who am I trying to fool with my fluffy posts?  Myself?  I cringe every time I write some empty nothing post just to fill a spot.  That was never my plan and yet, I tend to do this when things are not so fluffy.  I guess, I want every one to think my life is a bowl of cherries.  Well, I don't know what planet you came from but from here, life is rarely a bowl of cherries.  It is a mixed bag of nuts, sometimes with a few cherries on top.

Now, for the real update:  After all the torture at the doctor, the cast has been removed and I have returned to work with my big girl panties on and my wrist wrapped.  I still wince and cry out when it moves a certain way, the only difference is now, I have a new knot on my wrist from the injection site. So much for the wonderful world of doctors or, giving some doctors credit, so much for this one egomaniac.

And while I have been incapacitated my people I live with jumped in and cleaned house, cooked and kept up with all the things I normally do, showing great concern for my welfare and recovery...Not!

I have added severe headaches to my maladies so retirement is looking better all the time...at least then, I can be miserable out of the public eye.

You have just been served a dish of honesty for your breakfast, sorry, but hope it went well with your coffee.
My wish for you today, may there be more cherries.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

I Celebrate The End of The Holidays...

I sing a song of relief,
yet know the year will pass quickly.
I celebrate the life I have led and will lead.
I am grateful for the love that is always around.
I love the smiles of the innocent,
and the antics of the not so innocent.

The family made memories
and they will say, Remember the Christmas we...
Thanks to Aunt Marcy, our matriarch,
the holiday was a roaring success.
She fed us,
she spoiled us,
she loved us...
a very successful Christmas, indeed.
Thank you, Marcy!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Nars...(Warning: Tragic Story)

is/was one of our favorite swimming holes when the girls were young.   We had to travel dirt roads for what seemed like forever to reach this little paradise.

A spring fed creek tumbled through rocks down the hill side to feed the larger creek where "The Nars" were located. We had been visiting this place for years before I discovered it was actually called "The Narrows".

The water was clear, clean, almost crisp.  The creek narrowed at the curve, the origin of the name. It was an idyllic setting with tree lined banks and sandy creek bottom.

One side was rock bluff, the other was a sandy beach.  The young and the safety-minded adults loved the sandy side where the water gently sloped into deeper water.  It was the perfect place for a family outing...sand, sun, and water.

It was not unusual during lazy summer weekends to see adults carrying children through three feet of water (the shallow crossing to reach the beach), lugging coolers and quilts, prepared to spend the day.  Little tow-headed, half-naked children ran through the sand, splashed in shallow water, laughing with sheer delight as the guardians watched, smiling.

I learned to swim here.  I could leave the bluff and swim toward the sandy beach, knowing safe ground was yards away.  Along the bluff was perfect diving, the water was clear and you could swim  under about fifteen feet and explore the underwater beauty of the rock bluff.

With all moving water, there are currents.  Locals knew the currents and how to work with them.  I have floated far down stream with only the current carrying me, staring  up at the beautiful summer sky, content and safe with my knowledge of the place to break free and return to safer waters.

For years, Nars was only known to locals, who had permission from the land owner, and respected them by leaving nothing but footprints.

That soon changed as word spread of the hidden paradise.  It was invaded.  Now, long time campers and swimmers would arrive to find they must remove the trash before they could enjoy  their visit.  It soon became a party place with alcohol, idiots and unmentioned recreational drugs.

We visited less often.

My husband was a first responder.  One beautiful summer day, he received a call for help.  Upon arrival, one person had been pulled from the water but a second had not been rescued/recovered.  The drunken adult female had been revived but a child was still missing.

The rescuers entered the water, desperately searching.  Time was out, the water was not cold enough to prevent long term injury from drowning.

My husband found her, dressed in red, with her blond hair flowing with the current.  She was lodged against the bluff under water where the locals knew not to go.  Not quite eight, the small girl was beyond reviving, although the entire emergency crew tried.  Pronounced at the scene, there was no hope.

I did not know the details until much later.  After nights of interrupted sleep, with hubby waking up from nightmares, he told me.

The group of  "responsible" adults were all drinking.  No one could swim or no one was capable.  The child fell in, the aunt jumped in to save her and could not swim.  The drunken aunt was pulled out, the child was lost.

Hubby was the one who first saw her, the one who carried her to shore, the one who...I can't even speak of the sorrow or the nightmares he had.  He won't either. 

All he said was, I kept seeing our girls...our girls who had long blond hair and loved to wear red,  our girls who swam there a hundred times,  our girls that knew nothing but happy times in a beautiful place with responsible adults.

We never swam at Nars again and neither of us had the heart to tell the girls why.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Merry Christmas and Thank You...

for all your kind comments and well wishes. I shall return when my arm and I are back in full working order.
I've lost all my house shoes!
Ki must really think I'm special,
using my shoes to line her bed.

To all of you...
I wish a very Merry Christmas,
may your plate be full,
may your pants have elastic,
and may you be surrounded with love.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

The Scenic Route To Torture

Highway Nine, the scenic route,
We all know what that means.
Beautiful vistas, crooked roads, few guard rails and wonderful photo opportunities...on the way to another doctor.  I remember when this road was gravel and I rode in the back of the truck with my sisters going to visit kin in Stone County.
Imagine this with no rail, rolling gravel,
 and meeting a vehicle.
Twenty-two miles of crooked and steep,
takes me to the beauty of White River.
Sylamore creek feeds into White River
with a mansion on the bluff.

I'm sure you're wondering where the torture comes in...We're there...another wonderful doctor.  Shakes my hand, I scream.  He pokes my wrist, I scream.  He leaves the room and returns with a needle, and I scream some more. Tendinitis, he says, as if it were nothing. Just a tiny prick here, he says. (Afterwards, I wondered if he were describing himself)  After hours (it seemed) of probing with a needle as big as my arm (if it had been bigger, I would have said it), pop! goes the needle into the tendon.  He said, well, that tendon was a little tight.  The king of understatement!

I am wrapped elbow to thumb tip so I cannot move my right arm nor my thumb...for  ten days...but he releases me to return to work!  I don't know about y'all but I have to have a thumb to work.  I need two hands.  If thumbs weren't important in working the mail then they could hire armadillos.

THEN they want to charge me $15 to complete the required paperwork!  I asked, do you charge for filing the insurance?  No, that is a customer courtesy...no ca-ca!  That is the money paperwork.

Disheartened, hurting like crazy and embarrassed that I cried more than the eight-year-old with a broken arm, I left to drive my STANDARD home.  I took the less scenic route this time.
Down the mountains and  up the mountains, across White River, through the small town of Guion (which only had twelve miles of  crooked and steep) back home...only to get in the car again to return to my doctor to have her do the paperwork.

That went well, she was appropriately sympathetic and said, I still have the F disease but fixing the arm will help.  I return home and  find out she didn't SIGN the paperwork.  I know, I know, stupid!  I didn't check.  I decided it can wait til Monday. I am officially, legally off until after Christmas and can't do anything!

I must say the day is brighter, the arm pain has lessened, and I am lucky to still own two arms.  How did I write this post???  Very  slowly, one handed...I couldn't leave y'all hangin'...Merry Christmas.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Fibromyalgia, Blood Letting, Bone-Cracking, Haircutting Time Off

For the safety of the general public and my close family members, I wrangled a few days off to get my oil checked and tires rotated at the doctor's office.  I may be drawn and quartered but I used SICK LEAVE, an unpopular choice with the business powers that be.

Off to the doctor...been out of medicine....someone (a he-who-shall-not-be-named tractor man) did not pick it up in a timely manner, sooooooo, had to start them all over again today.  From small to big, and then I will be back on track. 

After all this time of being told I was depressed, stressed, or crazy, if you prefer my terminology, they have finally decided I have a real disease.   Fibromyalgia, such a big fancy name for all my symptoms!  Funny thing is, one symptom is depression...no poo-poo!!!  Exhaustion, dizziness, muscle pain, IRRITABILITY,  not sleeping...the list goes on.  The same list I have been giving  them a while.  Did they really think I was just making this stuff up?   So new medicine regimen, blood drawn for more tests, and assurances this is truly my problem.  I feel so much better...can you tell?

Next stop, chiropractor...and he hit all the sore spots that were pointed out to me that were also symptoms of the F disease...but I did feel better after that.

I found a stylist open and thought, what the heck, I have been cutting my hair so someone needed to fix it.  She did and told me I was sporting  the worse haircut she had ever seen but tried her best to improve the cut...makes a body feel good.

I also, FINALLY, got my glasses for my special eyes.  I can read!!!  I can see!!!  These glasses fit and they're not scratched...yet.  I must say it's a pure joy.
This morning I head to another specialist to see whether to keep the arm I have and fix it or just get rid of it...phantom limb can't be much worse than what I'm feeling now.  Maybe I will get a pair of bionic arms to go with my new glasses.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Thursday's Things In A Row...

Color-coded gas cans wait to be used,
My rhymes has been missing
so I'll try to amuse.
No post is complete without a horse,
dressed for winter,
they line up...
of course!
Rows of pine needles covered with snow.
Do snow flakes come in a row?
Since this is a farm,
you will always see,
rows of animals
looking for feed.

Visit Pat where it is warm.
Share your rows,
what's the harm?

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Hunting Rats With Tractors...

I'm sorry I missed the event, I hear it was quite dramatic and fun.  Any thing involving hunting vermin with large farm equipment has to be interesting to watch.

Hubby says, Ya know that brush pile...

I think, uh, which one?  We have a few.

Hubby says, You know the one I pushed up last summer to burn when it's wet...

Yes, I remember them all.

Any way with a detailed description, I finally pin point the right brush pile in my mind...and then I think, oh, no, not another tractor in the pond story!

Hubby continues, I was pushing the brush pile, tightening it up, and the dogs get after a rat.  The dogs are having no luck with the capture. Okay, now I envision him grading the whole hill side, scraping a hundred years of top soil up, trying to get a rat...on a tractor.  There is a reason I think this drastically...strange things happen a lot around here with my man and the tractor.

Hubbs tells me the rat runs out and climbs a tree.  Ki is on its tail all the way until it hits the tree.  Ki is many things but she is not a flying dog nor a tree climbing dog.  She trees it and won't stop barking.  Hubbs helps out by "tapping" the tree with the tractor bucket...the rat falls out.  My first concern is which tree did he "tap"?  Tap is a small word, but not when you're talking about a tractor.

I am assured, he did not harm the tree and it was JUST a small pine tree anyway...all trees are precious in my book.  So, I listen patiently, trying not to visibly cringe, trying not to picture the damage that pursuing a rat from a tractor could possibly cause.

At this point, the capture of the rat is not my main concern.  This the same man that drove a tractor into the pond, knocked the edge off the boat shed because he forgot he had the bucket up AND the man who ran over a lawn mower while chasing my horses on his Mule.  Oh, me of little faith!

The rat drops, the dogs pounce, the deed is done quickly.  The brush pile is still intact although about thirty feet from it's original position and the precious top soil is only slightly rutted.

The happy dogs proudly take turns carrying the rat around and admiring it.

I had to put my foot down when Ki-Anne wanted to add it to the pile of my slippers in her babies' bed.

...and God, please watch over my tractor man.  He needs all the help he can get.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Painting Emotions

I'm not sure what they represent
but I am lighter when I finish.
Just a part of the whole,
or does it represent a hole in the part?
I'm not a pink lover but tonight,
pink came out.
I let the colors choose me,
I allow the paint to pick the time.
I don't think.
I paint...
and that action, not the result, relaxes me.

I'm not sure why my last three have been abstracts...
but here is the third in as many weeks.
Painting is cheaper than therapy
and you can always paint over the uglies.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Confession/Mess-Up Continued...

We lost the runt.  Granny Pruett, a midwife, always said, Nature knows.  Never lost a runt before but there was something not right about this little one, other than it's size.  Ki and her other little peppers are flourishing.
They still shine, and at eight days old,
they know how to whine.
Ki places my old house shoes with them
when she leaves the nest.
Only two have full tails,
the rest wear natural short tails.
Six boys and one girl.
Each adopter will receive a free spay/neuter certificate,
prepaid by me, through our local ICARE.
I think that'll make my mistake a little easier to accept.

I just have to say...

Sunday, December 11, 2011

He Watched...

as I worked in the shop alone.
I felt his eyes followng me.
I thought he moved,
and as he walked,
his head moved side to side,
missing nothing..
Ancient man doll, you scare me,
with your painted hair and eyes that close.
I worked,
except for him...

At last, his eyes closed,
and the room seemed brighter. 
May you sell soon, old one.
I shall not miss you.
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