I have not done well at all. I am sorely disappointed in myself. I am still stuck in all my bad habits, all my clutter and procrastination. I am reluctant to move, change and get rid of anything, even worries. There’s a certain security that I feel in being stagnant even though it causes a gnawing discomfort. Being disgusted with oneself is not such a bad thing. It moved me to pick up my phone and make the needed appointment to get my car serviced. It was as hard as the medical and dental checkups and the call to the plumber. And it is hard to come to this space, too. I’ve fallen out of the habit.

The above words were written more than a few days ago. Bad habits like procrastination are hard to overcome. Wishing does not do the trick. I have to physically do the work. I had fallen back in love with words reading Geneen Roth’s cancer chronicles. I thought it would do the trick in bringing me back here. I thought I could write my own chronicles. I was fired up for a few short moments. I didn’t act on it and the momentum died. That is the thing – I have to take advantage of those falling in love and fired up moments. I needed to put my ass in the chair in front of the keyboard. I’m here finally, not exactly fired up, but my fingers are tapping away.

That dreaded car service appointment turned out quite beneign. There was no Oh, my God! at the end. I took advantage of being out to be out and about while waiting. The guy and I took a trip out to Chief Whitecap Park (Furdale Dog Park) for a walk in nature. It was Sheba’s old haunt in her younger years. I took her there every day I was off from work to run off some of her energy. It is full of beauty and memories. Sheba is gone now but she is with me always, trotting at my side. I feel her presence vividly along the trails, on the beach and the hill sides. On the way back, we stopped at Hue’s Art Supplies to view Degen Linder’s works in the gallery. It was a day well spent. I have fallen back in love with the doing and seeing in the physical world. It’s good to get out of my head.


Can I tell you something? It is difficult to write and work on being stuck when you are! Sometimes I feel so disgusted with myself. I try not to stay there. Yesterday I talked about how much time we spend on scrolling. I know that I haven’t always done so. I was a very late comer to the computer and smart phone. I was the smart one then. I’m not so now. It’s really not my fault. I fell into the same trap as many other people. Now I am determined to get out.

Instead of wasting time fighting my urges, I gave in and let my fingers wandered over the buttons, the mouse and keyboard. My brain still has some control over where they go. It can still say, enough now! I found this video this morning on clutter. It was a bit long, an hour. But since that’s what I am working on, it was well worth my time. I made my breakfast while I listened to it. I got some value from it.

I agree that the 3 things to work on are my emotions, time and stuff. And to work slow and prioritize, of course. I am not what you would call a hoarder. My house is not jam packed with stuff. I am a clutterer from way back, getting worse with each day. I tend to drop things wherever they happen to land. They never seem to be able to find a home. My worse traps are the dining room table and my desk.

The best time to work on anything is the present moment. That cuts the procrastination. I took her hint, got a box and cleared off my dining room table into it. That is, whatever could fit. Other times, I used a shoebox. I have a few of them around, waiting to be sorted and emptied. Next, I whipped off the tablecloths and threw them, along with a few other items into the washer. What a relief! I’ve been wanting to do that for quite a few days, but unable to, being paralyzed by emotions of I don’t know how. I know it sounds silly and lame. It is what it is.

I know my laundry is done by now. Time to hang it/put in dryer. I’ve done some dreaded dusting in the bedroom. The drapes are taken down and in the washer. It’s the blackout ones I made and hung last year. I’m sure they would appreciate a wash. Now that I’ve done that, I am not sure why it was so hard. I guess the hard part is if you don’t move, it’s hard to get it done. By taking ClutterClarity’s advice on going slow, I did kinda enjoy the process. It is nice to have a cleared table again. The next stop is my desk.


Do you know how much time you scroll on your phone? I don’t know for sure but it’s probably alot. The thing is knowing and trying to cut down makes it worse. It’s an addiction, like:

  1. Sucking your thumb for comfort.
  2. Kids wanting to press any button they see.
  3. Lighting another cigarette before you do anything.
  4. Having another cup of tea when you don’t know what else to do.

What I know is that I am uncomfortable in the moment and scrolling is an escape. I’ve outgrown sucking my thumb. I still press some buttons. I was able to give up cigarettes because of health reasons. I’ve cut down my tea consumption because of too many trips to the bathroom. The scrolling thing seems harmless enough and resulted in much sought information. But then I realize my attention span has dwindled to that of a gnat’s. Then there’s the memory. You say who needs it when there’s Google. True but I’m starting to feel somewhat robotic like. My emotions and thinking becoming muted. I’m like a deer in headlight, blinking, unthinking, not knowing what to do next.

Do you know how much of yourself you can lose to others whether it’s family, spouse, lover, friend or foe? You compromise, you turn a blind eye, you stay silent – giving up pieces of yourself to get along, to be nice, to be kind, to be…..I didn’t know until periods of depression, downtime, aloneness, stillness. In those moments of being the deer in headlight, I am faced with ‘I don’t know who I am‘. I am the stranger at the door in Derek Walcott’s Poem, Love After Love.

The time will come
when, with elation,
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror,
and each will smile at the other’s welcome,
and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was your self.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you

all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,

the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.

How am I to recover myself? What they tell me to do is to replace an unhealthy habit with a healthier one. So here I am, showing up more in this space, digging deep, trying to coax out the words I once love so much. It is hard work, being here. Being somewhere else is preferable. I made an escape to the garden and greenhouse. Then I had a snack. Now I am back with a cup of bitter melon tea to do the work.

HOW WOULD IT/I BE without..

I am feeling somewhat despondent off and on these days. I am not fighting it but I am not letting it overtake me either. I am still able to not rain on another’s parade. I am not at all full of vim and vigor. I am full of languor. I would like to just sink into a puddle. I don’t. I plod along as best as I can. It takes me longer to do anything. I am not saying, this, too, shall pass or this is normal. Nothing feels normal any more. It is not a bad thing. It makes me look at life with new eyes. I still have the passion for a well-lived life.

My mood have led me to think of the Work of Byron Katie and the 4 questions:

  1. Is it true?
  2. Can you absolutely know that it’s true?
  3. How do you react, what happens, when you believe that thought?
  4. Who would you be without that thought?

They are very good questions to ask. I should ask them more often. They made think about how I would be without my thoughts and feelings of despondency. They stirred me enough to show up here to engage in some words. I had fallen somewhat out of love with them lately. I had lost a sense of purpose for them. I started to question, what does it matter anyways? Who reads them anyways? Then I remember that I write mostly for myself, to help and guide me out of these moods. So I ask myself: How would I be without these thoughts and feelings?

I would be more cheerful and positive. I would have a sense of purpose and direction. I would have more energy. I could move and not be stuck and mired in thoughts and feelings. I could get things done. I experimented and tested letting go. Did I tell you I finally called the plumber and got the kitchen drain unplugged? Well, I did. And everything went whoosh down the drain. More than a few dollars went that way, too. I thought: Do I want to hang onto those dollars and sewage or can I let them go. I have to admit fixing the plumbing is one of the most satisfying feelings in life.

I am feeling a bit better, more lively, but not ready to do a jig yet. I got a few ugly jobs done, like chucking out some Jerusalem artichokes fermenting in brine from last year. The thing with storing things out of sight is they become out of mind. They did pop up in my head once in a while but I quickly banished them. Today I brought them out into the light. They weren’t terrible looking but they weren’t pretty either. They were soggy with a layer of white stuff on top. They say that it’s normal when fermenting vegetables. They are now in the compost.

The kombacha was next on my list. I can’t remember when I had stop drinking and making it. I had a few jars sitting under my kitchen buffet. In one jar, the kombacha became a scoby. It was still viable. The next jar had completely dried up, including the scoby. I had to soak and scrape it out. My biggest jar still had some very strong kombacha with bunch of scobies. My first impulse was to rid it all but then I thought I shouldn’t throw out the baby with the bath water. So I saved one scoby and 1/3 cup of kombacha, brewed some fresh tea to make a new batch. I will see how it turns out. Maybe it will be delicious. Life is hard.


This changes everything, this awakening to what is here now. I’m uncomfortable and unhappy with the knowledge. I’m taking an online course through the University of Saskatchewan on Equity, Inclusion and Diversity. Today’s lecture was given by Senator David Arnot. He has been Saskatchewan Human Rights commissioner since 2009. He spoke on Canada’s shame -the Indian residential school grave sites and missing and murdered indigenous women. He talked of many things – that Saskatchewan is the most racist when it came to aboriginals. We are followed by Manitoba and Alberta. Only 30% of people over age 40 embrace diversity. This is really depressing.

Not to be negative and totally depressed, he did offered hope. He recommended 2 books: 1. Treaty Elders of Saskatchewan by Harold Cardinal and Walter Hildebrandt. 2. Bounty and Benevolence by Arthur J. Ray, Jim Miller and Frank J. Tough. He touched on Rights Revolution, Responsibility Revolution and Citizenship Education. It was a powerful lecture. It left me feeling about how much is wrong with our province, our country and world. I can’t help feeling bereft, as if I’m mourning for something lost.

I can’t really say it’s innocense that I’ve lost. I’ve been and yet not been aware of all these and more for a long time. Maybe it’s what is meant by being unconscious. Now in our present climate of Covid, we have no place to run or hide. We have to face some hard truths. I wonder how we are going forward from here. What can we do? What should we do? Do we want to go back to normal? I don’t think I can or want to. But I am feeling stuck, unable to go back or move forward. I think I’ll just sit and sip my hot water for now.


Monday morning, September 27,2021 10:17 am. It is sunny and 17℃ outside. It is 19.6℃ in the greenhouse. I am adopting a journal style to chart the days and my progress in life. It is a memory bank since my mind and memory are not functioning at prime in these times. I am working on improving that and a few other things. I hope I don’t get sidetrack and get lost wandering down too many paths. If I do, I hope I have the insight to recognize it and get back on track.

This morning I have already spent some time in the greenhouse as is my routine. I’ve trimmed the tomato and cucumber leaves so that the sun can find its way in. My seeding of radishes and snow peas have germinated. It’s probably still too warm for the radishes in there. They are getting a bit leggy. We are having such an unusual year with climate change. It’s hard to predict how the temperatures will go. I will just have to garden by the seat of my pants. There hasn’t been any failures in growing for me yet. I always get something for my efforts. Even if that something is learning, it’s a huge reward.

My kitchen drain is still a problem. I haven’t given up on unclogging it myself. The plumber can wait. Meanwhile, I’ve developed a systematic of getting the dishes done with minimal effort. I can do a whole day’s load in the dishwasher. I’m hoping the super hot water from the dishwater will eventually dislodge whatever is in its way. Cross your fingers and toes for me, will you? Like I said, this is teaching me patience and delayed gratification. I am also learning how to organize, do things more efficiently, saving time and energy.

Saturday, October 2, 2021 4:17 pm. It is 20℃ outside and 23.3℃ in the greenhouse. Wonderful autumn weather, almost summer like. I’m not kidding myself though. The days are getting shorter, no early morning sun at 6 am and the sun is gone before 6 pm. I am feeling all these weather changes. I am feeling the Covid blues also. It is true. There are no good news these days. It is what is here. I try to put my best foot forward, doing the best I can. So even though I feel no expanse, no flow, I take small flights through my days. I am not my feelings. Inspite of anything and everything, I can get up, dress up and show up.

How quickly a week passes even though I feel slow as a slug. How did I get to Saturday already?Perhaps I am moving faster than I feel. I can be deceived by my emotions. Therefore, I should never give up. Things are not as bad as they seem. So I do a little of this and a little of that. Mornings are always the easiest and hardest. How do I get started? The sun comes out and I have to step out. We went to the farmers market. It was easy. I didn’t have to drive. I get into the truck and away we went and came home with a load of peppers and eggplants. No matter how hard it is for me to go/do, I am always happy that I made the effort.

Now the day is almost done. I am sipping my decaf, waiting for supper. I am not exactly chilled. I am not exactly down. My kitchen drain is not exactly cleared but it is capable of making a sucking sound when it starts to drain – some. It’s progress. That’s what I am always working for – progress in everything. Life is hard.