My cough goes on though less harsh and frequent. I’ve been distracted, obsessed and more than useless these past week.  Going into week 2 now. I might be hard on myself but that’s how it is. I’m also easier on myself than usual. I’ve dropped things, not keeping up, letting them go. However, my brain and thoughts keep beating on. That’s how I am. No use berating myself for being my natural self. I’ve already cursed myself enough for my past stupidity.

Yes, I know. I have to be kinder to myself. I am. There’s so much to be said for hindsight. Wisdom comes from living and making mistakes. When I know better, I do better. Now I do loving kindness for myelf. Hence, letting all insignicants drop from my shoulders while I try to rest and heal. Nature seems to know when it’s a good time. Both the guy and I had a stressful fall with our less than desirable neighbour. She knows how to create drama and then some. Somehow we moved through it. We had a walk to put in and the front yard to landscape. There was a lot of physical work and mental stress to push through.

We had a little reprieve after that.  Then Sheba came down with a big ear infection and hematoma. Two visits to the dog ER, 5 visits to the vet clinic in total. 3 ear aspirations. A stoned dog.  Then an anxious dog motoring around bumping into things with her head cone. Staying up all night with her.Going out with her numerous times in the middle night. No sleep for 2 weeks. It turned out well in the end. Sheba still has her ear. It looks almost as good as ever – just a tiny hard ridge at the tip. She is still as spunky as ever. The vetinary bill was not too bad.

We got through Christmas, then New Year. We had no time to get sick. But then, the guy got sick. I was very careful, avoiding, not overdoing, drinking lots of fluids, etc. But there was no getting away. We had absorbed all that stress into our body. I guess we had to let it pass through. That’s my theory anyways. I’m sticking to it. I hope I feel better enough to go to my Buddhusim class tomorrow. I’ve stacked up on Fisherman’s lozenges and I’ll take my hot water. It’s good for the cough. Cold water does zilch.

I’m thinking about getting the house in order. It’s my most pain in the ass. I’m not killing myself over it. I’m not doing anything at all. I hear Sheba shaking her ears. It’s almost her eating time. Will do that and then make myself a cup of tea and sit in the sun. Tomorrow is another day. It’s a good thing there’s always a tomorrow. The end.


It is the evening of the day. I sit and watch the last of the sun play on the wall. I’m tapping again on the keyboard. I thought I would get a head start on the last post for the Ultimate Blog Challenge. It will be the caboose on my train. Perhaps I can reach my 1,002 word count as was my initial intention for this blog.

So where have I been and how far have I come on this journey? Reading back to my first post in January, I was in a bit of a dark place. I had lost the meaning and sentiments for Christmas and most ‘special occasions’. I’m not sure if I have regained them. I might have developed new meanings and sentiments. Time will tell when they next roll around. At any rate, I’m not feeling empty and lost in space any more. What I feel is grounded.

It’s a good sign, right? It’s the reason why I took up writing daily again. It’s more binding and easier doing it in a group challenge. It’s a chance to enlarge my write tribe. It’s always better with company. It’s like walking the Camino Road, the spiritual path trading secrets on cooking, baking, creating, health, running a business –  to that destination of enlightenment. Maybe one day soon I will walk it in Spain. Until then, I will walk the path of my words here. I will try to get up, dress up and show up as best I can. That’s all I can ask of myself – my best.

Now it is really the evening of the day. It’s that time if you’re not feeling well, you”ll feel worse. I’m feeling worse. Chest is heavy, sinuses dripping and finding it’s an effort to take a deep breath. I’ve taken an extra strength tylenol and sipping hot water. I do periodic percussions on my chest. My nurse’s experience is coming to help myself. I hope today is the day when the tide will turn and I will start to feel better tomorrow. I will use accupressure to see if it will help. I’m glad I’m Chinese and know of those ancient Chinese secrets. Heh, heh, heh! I will this a rest and do some qigong and come back tomorrow.

It’s true that things always look better in the morning. My cold is turning. Believing in myself and my health practices have turned the tide. It’s not any big thing that I do, but all the little ones that I do each day. And if I fall off the track, as I’m apt to, coming back again and again. Being sick made me realize how good healthy felt and demonstrated to me the power of qigong. I felt the effectiveness of the gentle exercises I performed last night. I’m a fan of Daisy Lee and Radiant Lotus Medical Qigong.

My world here in Canada is bright and sunny today. I felt well enough to take the fur baby out for a stroll. It was +3 Celsius. I’m hoping the sun will melt the snow off our solar panels. It was a pleasant surprise to receive our electric bill this morning. It had a credit of $56.25! We had hopes of zeroing out our electric bill with our 40 panels. But our climate interferes. Still, we are happy we are doing something to offset climate change. In 2019 we paid electric bills in January, March, April, and a small one in December. It looks like we could have a better coming year. But that also mean we having worse climate change.

So there you have it. I’ve come to the end. I will not make it to a 1000 words. I’m a Hallmark girl after all. No use repeating myself for word count. It’s been a pleasure showing up and doing my little tap and dance. Thank you all for your company. Thank you Paul Taubman for running the show. Thank you Doug Jarvie for advising me to take a photo of my old photo. It works really well – and fast. Thanks for your stories and recipes from Mexico, William Chaney. I wish I could raise chickens here, too. Maureen D., I love how kind and generous you are to me. Then there’s Karen Sammer, Martha and all the rest of you! I could hit a 1000 words if I keep on. But I’m going to take us out with Mick and the Boys. I love this video. It is almost the evening of the day again.


HUMILITY – The Fall and Rise of the Phoenix

I wonder why I always feel I have to fix everything that is not right. I don’t. I was told by a therapist that I am not that powerful. I am not. But somehow that feeling is so persistent. I wonder when and how I got the job of being God? I am sucking on a Fisherman’s lozenge and tapping out my ire. Did you know that I could suck on a lozenge and do my swimmer’s breathing under water at the same time. I can. That is my one and only unique talent.

The good news is I’m feeling physically better. My cough has abated with the help of an inhaler. My doctor gave me a sampler – Zenhale. It has earned its name. My breathing is much more zen. No more wheezing. The bad news is that the inhaler is not covered by the drug plan and costs about $125 – $140. The sampler has 60 puffs and I’ve used 6. I have 54 puffs left. 4 more puffs tomorrow and I should be good – for the year, I hope.

I do have other good news. I’m getting better at problem solving. After reading so many of Sue Grafton’s novels, I’m learning a few detective tricks on sleuthing and organizing. I’m using Kinsey’s Millhone’s idea of jotting down important notes on index cards. I’m actually getting my life in order that way. Caroline Myss’ teachings are true wisdom. Her putting your head in the toilet for 7 minutes have snapped me out of ‘feeling sorry for myself blues’ over and over. Her blunt, bare bone honesty has enough humour that makes what she says tolerable. She can be harsh but she gives good counsel.

Times that I find myself so distraught, I would have done so many silly and maybe harmful things – had I not heard her voice in my ear. Go ahead, eat that ice cream. You might feel better for the moment. But…she lost that one. I did eat some delicious hot chocolate sundae. Her voice was not harsh enough. I did listen to the haircut one. I could be sorry. Even if I’m not, does that change anything? Buying something expensive and extravagant – hah! What does that fix except a bigger hole in your expense? Go put your head in the toilet for 7 minutes! And so that 7 minutes was walking off my distress. Then I was fine. I looked into all the stores and saw all the junk. I don’t want to buy any of that.

The lesson I’ve learned over and over is I don’t have to fix everything right now or at all. I can’t make all bad feeling go away. They don’t have to go. They can stay where they are. I can walk away from them leave them behind. Who says I have to carry them around?

It is the next afternoon. I’m eating apple pie and drinking tea. I can’t say that I feel on top of the world but I’m aiming for it. My success is probably minimal. Pessimistic, I know. My cold is still hanging on, though not with deep hooks. I find laying down to sleep is still a problem so I will have to do the best I can. But my attitude SUCKS.

My biggest problem is that I accept all the blame for everything that goes wrong. You see it is about my so felt inadequacies, my jealousies, my lack of generosity and kindness, my selfishness and meanness, my obsession with taking things personally. How many times do I have to kick myself in the teeth? Shall I come to you on wounded knees? Shall I beg for forgivenness and redemption? Am I really guilty of all these infractions? Is it really true? Shall I give up ‘all my, though not really mine fault’ so that I can feel happier? So how the hell am I going to do that? I suppose now I have to figure that out.

One thing I have learnt well is to speak in the first person singular – always. It is all about me. It is not about blame. It is all about bringing clarity to mind. It is all about being vulnerable. I do tell – but it is on me. I’m learning about humility – the falling and rising of the Phoenix. What I know for sure if you come upon an obstacle/problem, you can skirt it, jump/fly over it, pretend it is not there, whatever…There are no magic tricks to make it go away. The only solution is to solve it. Don’t ask me how.


The road to health is a tough one. I’m into my second week of scratchy throat turning into nasty coughing up my guts. How many mornings have I started out thinking, Oh, I think I’m getting better only to find myself feeling God awful in a couple of hours. I did the same this morning. I felt a DEFINITE change. I felt very hopeful. Everything was rattling loose. I have something to blow out of my nose. I only wheeze when I lay down. But sure enough, after breakfast and after doing 2 little paintings, I succumbed to the God awful state. I got out my dynamite tea, my own dug up and dried dandelion roots from last fall. They were the last of my supply.

No need to say that I am not at all cheerful lately. Was I ever? It’s a good time/or not a good time to trash myself. Do I need to wound myself further.? Of course not! I’m giving up wounding altogether. There’s enough pain in the world already. I need not add to it. I need to purge it all from myself since I can’t do anything about anybody else. Oh excuse me, I’m having another fit of coughing. I’m on my last Fisherman’s Lozenges. I had two bags but can’t find the other. Oh, well. I have to resort to the lemon drops. The only thing is they make my teeth feel funny after sucking on them. I have LOTS of them. Funny how that’s always the case.

Back to trashing myself now that I’ve brought it up. I’m thinking my negativity and other shortcomings must be the reason I’m down and still down for the count. It’s really tough for me to let go of anything, even coughing and feeling rotten. It’s not just the clutter I hang on to. There’s comfort in what you know versus what you don’t. I’m sick and tired of feeling sick, tired and hacking. I made the decision to purge that along with other rubbish.

A couple of years ago, Grace was the word I chose for the year. It evolved from a painting exercise I did. The exercise involved painting on the same canvas for 30 days. Though I didn’t quite make it to 30 days, it was pretty close. ‘Grace’ emerged on the canvas on day 22. She looked so happy and smiling. There was a sparkle in her eyes and her face glowed. That was it. She was finished. She hangs on the wall in my recently purged downstairs.

I was looking at her as I laid on the coolness of the leather couch one very hot afternoon. I went, Oh! I think I had painted myself. I am Grace – the desired self I want to be. I thought, In what way am I not that Grace? It’s something that needs more pondering on. I shall leave it on that note for now. It I deserve time to seriously consider why I’m so hard on myself. Maybe at the end of it, I can rid the length of my suffering whenever I get sick. Nurse, heal thyself.



My little scratchy throat seemed to have descended into my chest and upwards toward my head. I guess it’s what’s called a summer cold. Whatever it is, it doesn’t feel good. I haven’t been able to sleep lying down for 3 nights now. Every time I tried, I end up bouncing back up in a fit of harrowing cough. Last night was a little better. I took a Tylenol #3 before hand and propped myself up against 2 cushions against the arm of the couch. I was lying down in some way. I was able to sleep in snatches.

I look none the worse for how wretched I felt. I always had trouble getting sympathy when I get one of these episodes, especially at work. I remembered after working a night shift, I approached my manager to see if I should return for another shift. She didn’t give me a resounding no but advised me as did the Health Office, to get some sleep and see. Nobody said I shouldn’t have phoned in sick, but there’s the guilt I felt. When I complained to a fellow coworker/friend that our manager didn’t stick up for me, I got no comfort either. Well, she had her own job to worry about! was what I got.

That was quite a few years ago. Obviously I haven’t learned too much. I’m still not good at taking care of myself. Oh, wait! I mustn’t be harsh with myself. I haven’t been sick like this since the fall of 2014. Four years, that’s pretty good. Good enough. This time I didn’t show up for my shifts. I’m my own boss now. No point trying to be the Wonder Woman that I truly am. I nixed my swimming Monday and Wednesday and will for tomorrow, too. I still puttered in the garden and yard before I got bad.

That’s what I mean about my learning curve. I’ve been outside early in the morning, cleaning and planting the previous week. That was my mistake. The pollen count is the highest in the mornings. I didn’t wear a mask. I’m proned to respiratory ailments due to my sinus anomoly. I knew all that. But I still became a victim to the pollen attacks. I felt pretty smug. I thought I had beaten my condition. I forgot that it can take days to get sick. Now it will take me another week to fully recover – the statistics from past experiences.

When you’re sick, you’re suppose to drink lots of fluids. That is relatively easy to do but rest doesn’t come readily. When I lay down, I start coughing. With all the fluid I’m drinking, I have to bop up to the bathroom frequently. No, there’s no rest or peace feeling this way. The book is too heavy to hold to read for long. A few pages takes hours to read. I’m just sucking it up, doze when I can. But at least the garden is mostly in except for a few kohlrabis and a couple rows of beans. There’s time. They can wait. Most everything can wait.

As you can see, I’m can still bitch. I must be getting better.