September 21/20

Monday morning. I’m trying not to fall into my usual whine but I do feel like a bear. I want to crawl into a hollow log and sleep the day away. I gave myself a talk and got dressed after breakfast. I even ran a brush through my hair. I got the beginning of breadmaking. I have 30 minutes to sip my cuppa before proceeding to the next step.

It’s turning out to be a beautiful sunny morning. I had a whiff of energy the other day to clear and tidy my space. It’s not perfect but a big improvement. I can relax and have room to breathe again. It reminds me that I don’t have to do big. Picking up and putting away a few things goes a long way. It’s an opening to feeling better, leading to do more. Rome was not built in a day.

My loaves are now proofing for 40 minutes before their bake. I’m glad that I’ve pushed through my fatigue and inertia. It helped listening to my favourite podcast, Tapestry. This morning it was a story of a man who built a train in his basement. It’s a very interesting and inspiring story. Talk about a guy with a passion. He had this dream since 12 years old, maybe even younger. I think we/I need passion to push us/me onward on hard days. I think I got what it takes.

September 27/20

It’s a sunny Sunday. A week almost squeaked by without my showing up here. Well, here I am. All dressed and hair sorta combed. It’s 19 weeks and one day since my Sheba’s left this earth. I’m not counting the time as much, but I still remember. She was a big part of me. She was that soft animal of my body that Mary Oliver speaks of. I miss her warmth and softness. So I shed a few tears in gratitude and love of her.

I’ve awaken as if from a long coma. I wonder what has happened to usme. I wonder what has happened to the world. Is it the Covid? Or is it that the Covid has awaken us to the world as it really is now, the world we have created? There is no place to hide or deny now. So I take a deep breath. I have been sleepwalking, living in my head – for a long time now. I’ve been working hard this week, coming out of my dreamland, out of denial, to take a look around at the real physcial world. I’m trying hard not to go back down the rabbit hole. I’m trying to be brave. I’m trying to find purpose. I’m trying to feel love.


September 18/20

There are so many things that are irking me right now. I suppose it can be a good thing. I’m restless, on the move instead of a drowsy potato on the couch. What is irking me, you ask. First of all, lack of REM sleep. The neighbour has installed a very bright and glaring lightbulb outside on her garage. It’s on 24 hours a day. The trouble is at night. The light seeps through our bedroom venetians which are installed between the panes. The reflection is quite bright. Though I can get to sleep, I can’t stay asleep. I wake frequently through the night. Last night we had to cover the windows with a light blanket and towel. They are still tacked up. Who wants to do that every night? Now I have to turn the light on in the bedroom during the day.

The thing to do would be to talk to her. Be proactive. Be direct. Her renter already told us he had no luck. She considers the light is her security system even though he tried to tell her it is a signal there is no one at home. I’ve had no past successes in negotiating with female neighbours. I will have to send the guy over. Maybe he has some charm. Solution number 2 would be to install a curtain rod to hang some dark drapes. But I love my non dust collecting in-between venetians and being able to see the beautiful wood frames. I’m trying not to rush into solving this. So blankets, towels and drapes for now.

I’m unsettled enough today that I’ve already got soup in the Instant Pot by 8:30 am. I’ve got a couple of rooms vacuumed and sorted out some tomatoes. Yes, there’s a bee in my bonnet that I’m trying to soothe.

September 19/20

It is Saturday, Sheba’s day. I’ve had a couple of restless, more energy kind of days. Now I’m just listless and drab. There’s no Sheba around to keep me on track. I have to do it all on my own power. I did go over to talk to the neighbour to talk about her high voltage ‘night light’. Alas/hooray she was not home, gone for the week. I wrote her a nice could-we-solve-this-problem note and taped it to her door. Thank goodness her renter had sense to turn out the light in the meantime. A week of no sleep and being pissed off would do me in.

Now I’m just pecking on my keyboard. It is soothing and calming. It’s like a pacemaker for my brain. I should come here more often. How many times have I said it now? Why don’t I just do it? It’s one of those mystery questions with no answer. I will carry on the best I can. I am not behind. I am not deficient. I am what I am. A little Dr. Seus here. I do so like Green Eggs and Ham even though I am not Sam-I-Am.

September 20/20

It’s Sunday morning coming down. I’m not as morose as Kris Kristofferson. It helps that I didn’t smoke my brain out last night. I didn’t have a beer for breakfast either. I’m trying not to give in to the season of my moods. I’m concentrating on the moment of now. So…I have a pot of yellow roma tomatoes stewing on the stove. They’re smelling super tangy. It’s a waker upper. Just what I need. I am not languishing on the couch with my book of crossword puzzles waiting for things to change.


This morning a memory came up on Facebook from a year ago. It was of our visit to Mount Carmel with Sheba last August. Sheba was running down the hill. She looked so vibrant and alive. It brought tears to my eyes. She had walked the Stations of the Cross with Rod.

It is almost lunch. The tomatoes have stewed enough. So have I. I have not languished the morning away. I am not unhappy. Just a little misty and nostalgic. I am paying attention to the moment and what is important. I am problem solving. I am making space. I am making peace.




September 12/20

It’s another Saturday morning. My Sheba is on my mind, good memories of our time together. My arm is still aching down to my hand from my shingles vaccine earlier in the week. This reminds me of my mother’s experience with shingles. It also started on a Saturday. It was a very, very bad time. Hence, my vaccine. She was very vocal in urging all of us to get it. Thankfully she’s recovered with minimal damage.

Not all Saturdays are equal. I still love Saturdays. It used to be my weekly swim morning before Covid. I’ve adjusted to Tuesdays and Thursdays now. Double the pleasure. I did cancel out twice this week. Apps are so wonderful in many ways. I just push the CANCEL button to unbook my time. No questions asked. It would have been wonderful if there was such an app for work. You wouldn’t have to worry about not sounding sick enough phoning in sick.

Saturday mornings used to be cleaning chore time when I was a kid. We used to live in this small rented house behind our cafe in Maidstone. It belonged to the town doctor. The kitchen floor was worn through in spots. I can still see it in my mind’s eye after all these years. It made for difficult washing.

Sept. 13/20

It’s Sunday and I’m stuck. I have lots to do but can’t seem to find a way to start. Have you ever been here? I was like that yesterday, too. I couldn’t even finish yesterday’s entry. I’ve left it hanging and dangling. Will have to backtrack. What I did do was tackle things that I could start on -like cleaning behind the fridge and stove and cleaning the toilet. I did a load of laudry and picked a pail of tomatoes. So it was not a lost day.

I will have to do the same today. Start where I can. I will sort the tomatoes.

September 17/20

My energy is one with autumn. It is the season for slowing down. I certainly have! I’m resigned to it. I go to bed each evening with new resolves of doing better, doing more. I wake up each morning not wanting to and not knowing how to. There’s nothing to do but do the best I am able to. I will move if there is something urgent. That is how we are built. If there is an emergency, we will bust ass.

In the meantime, I’m putting one foot in front of the other. It’s not as if I am just parked on my butt all day. It just feels so. Feelings can be false. I’ve stuck to my exercise regime – swim Tuesday and Thursday. I did not push the CANCEL button. AND I went to the AM Energizer aerobics class on Wednesday. Hurray for me! My lunch dishes are done. I’ve rinsed off my swim suit and gear from this morning. I’m showing up here, tapping as best as I can. What I really want to do is to fall asleep and wake up energized. I don’t think it’s going to happen anytime soon.

But onward ho!



September 8/20

I cancelled my swim this morning. I’m trying to find a good reason for it besides not wanting to. The not wanting should be good enough but the mind feels guilty. To assuage the guilt, I’m showing up here. God formid that I should waste time laying around, eh? Today would be a good day for it. It was -2 C when I woke up. But it’s toasty warm here in my space. The sun is shining through the recently washed windows. I’m happy sitting here and tapping out thoughts and feelings.

I’m not all about cancelling and lolling around though that’s how I feel most of the time – lacking motivation and energy. It seems that my feelings and how I see myself can be false. It’s part of my physicality. Now that I am aware, I can work with it. I need not trash myself so much. When I am in the state of not ‘wanting’ to do stuff, not much can come out of it even when I push and push. I learned that the hard way in the water, trying to do the breast stroke. I struggled with perfecting techniques. It was a hard and slow going. I felt like a turtle inching my way down the lane. My back ached. Then I had a thought. Why don’t I just be with the water?

The thought was triggered by memory of David Foster Wallace’s commencement speech, This is Water. I don’t know why it came. Maybe it was because I was in the water. Funny how things pop into my head. They travel through the air. It’s really light bulb moments literally. I appreciate them very much. Otherwise, I would be in the dark alot, not aware, dumber than a bunny. I read his speech again. It is an education and an understanding on how to think. And I am aware. I am in the moment. This is water.

September 9/20

I’m learning to date my visits here. Sometimes I leave posts not completed. Sometimes I don’t come back for days and weeks. My thoughts are left hanging. They get dried and lose meaning. I’m trying to improve. That is the essence of me. Self improvement is my middle name.

September 10/20

This is turning into a diary. It’s a good way of staying on track when I lose will and ambition and the power of memory is fading. I’m in a bit of a grouch. I wonder if it could be one of the side effects of the shingles vaccine from Tuesday. It sure is painful. My arm is still achy but I can raise my arm all the way above my head this morning. I don’t feel as flu like and miserable as yesterday – except for the grouchy part. I cancelled my swim again. I hope this is not me. On second thought, my arm is quite achy. I feel quite testy.



August 17/20

I can’t believe it went up to 35 degrees Celsius today. I am not fond of high temperatures in summer. It always bring back feelings of loneliness and isolation. Those memories of growing up in small town Saskatchewan are hard to shed. It comes with being a child of immigrant parents. Though I never thought we were poor,we were. And we were strangers in a strange land. I remembered the starkness of our no frill lives. Though it is what I strive for now, I felt the lack that I can identify now.

It mattered then not having Christmases, birthday parties and such. It probably was because most people in town did. It mattered that I couldn’t have a bicycle or take swimming lessons. It mattered that we didn’t take vacations. Our cafe was opened every day except for Sundays all year. So we never got to go anywhere, even out of town much. No vacations. No lakes. There was Sunday School which I hated because I had no special clothes. I remembered getting feather dustered when I mutinied and refused to go.

Why am I dredging up all this shit? Because it is hot. It triggers bad memories. This morning I came across the name Natalie Goldberg. She advocates in her book Writing Down the Bones, “Write what disturbs you, what you fear, what you have not been willing to speak about. Be willing to be split open.”  That’s the way I’ve always written anyways – raw and from the heart. I have no shame.

Sept. 5/20

It’s another Saturday. It’s 16 weeks since Sheba’s left us. Though I am at ease with it now, tears still sting my eyes at the mention. It’s not a bad thing. Love does not leave with the physical body. She resides in my heart forever. It’s another Saturday. It’s not my swim day anymore. Now I swim Tuesday and Thursday mornings. It’s all the better, double the pleasure. There’s only 3-4 people in the pool at that time. Lots of space, easy to relax and enjoy. I don’t have to worry about someone grabbing my toes. I am a turtle in the water as well as out!

I have not been showing up here much lately. I fell off my writing wagaon again. It happens. Words and conversation left me. I enjoyed the silence and absence of my chatter. I enjoyed the change. I am trying to get my shit together. It’s a lifelong project. I guess that’s why I can get up every morning. There’s always something to do. There’s always something new to learn. What I am trying to learn now is how not to scroll my mornings away. These are beautiful precious hours to be spent on my life, not peeking through someone else’s. It’s a good reason to return to the keyboard – to focus on what is really important to me.

An important observation I made lately is that I no longer mind/dread the changing seasons/weather. I see that they all have their gifts. I’m reminded of the song Turn, Turn, Turn. I’m speaking, of course, through rose-coloured glasses now. It is a beautiful warm September day. Time will tell.

To everything turn, turn, turn
There is a season turn, turn, turn
And a time to every purpose
Under heaven