Saturday, December 25, 2010

Simon's Cat in 'Santa Claws'

It never gets old in the giggle department

All the Pretty Little Horses

This is actually a very old blog from my original days. I thought until recently it was bought out by CNet until a fellow editor told me I had neglected the other site so long that it was bought out by CBS. Sheesh. Where does time go?

So, a lot has happened since the last blog. I wrote a lot but crying too much to hit the post button.
My aunt Jan, finally passsed away. She was at home with my uncle Steve holding her hand.
In this past week I lost both of my pet bunnies. Inki to old age and Grissom from a broken heart. I kinda know how he feels. I will never use the expression, "dumb bunny" ever again.

I have purposely stayed at the farm and in isolation since Jan's death.
Now, more than ever, thiis old blog sums up what Jan meant to me.
BTW~ the "ex" in this blog is Shoe Man. He just texted me, asking if I was at the barn,yet? On my way...

Time to rerun another blog. It is one of my favorite Christmas memories and I hope it helps to remind everyone what the season is about.

Love and White Light~ Kimba

When You Wake, You'll Have Cake, And All The Pretty Little Horses.

Hush-a-bye, don't you cry,
Go to sleepy little baby.
When you wake, you'll have cake,
And all the pretty little horses.

Black and bay, dapple and grey,
Coach and six little horses,
Hush-a-bye, don't you cry,
Go to sleepy little baby.
Hush-a-bye, don't you cry,
Go to sleepy little baby,
When you wake, you'll have cake,
And all the pretty little horses.
This was my favorite lullaby as a child.

Somehow in a family in a suburban Pennsylvania town, there was one child of three, who dreamed endlessly of horses. My parents were baffled by the intensity of my love. Where would we keep a horse? I was constantly told there was no money for horses. Yet every night I went to sleep with that lullaby in my head.
At Christmas I would visit with Santa at our church holiday gathering and tell him that all I wanted was a horse. No toys. Just a horse.
Every Christmas I would run out to the shed in our backyard and see a shed full of garden tools and no horse.
I never let on the disappointment to my parents, but inside I was always crushed that there was no horse in the back yard.
I never gave up the dream and at age 22, I bought my first horse and never looked back at my life without them.
Over these past few months I have written about my ex and sometimes I haven't liked him too much. There are times when one can remember that in spite of where we ended there was a time when one person seemed like a dream come true.
The common bond the boyfriend and I had was horses. He was a horse shoer and I am a sport massage therapist for horses. We met through friends who I knew from working at horse shows.
I will be honest that I thought he seemed nice enough, but my heart was healing from another lost love and I had no desire to try again. After much wooing and pursuing I relented to dating him because plain and simple, he was a nice guy who understood my love for horses came before anything else in my life. Here was a man who was willing to concede to that fact and we settled into a comfortable life together.
In the first year of our relationship I listened to my boyfriend's childhood which was filled with horses.
He grew up on a small farm and had cousins the same age who grew up a couple miles away on a farm. His childhood consisted of cowboying on his pony Curious George with his cousins and their ponies.
I loved these stories because they were so unlike my own suburban memories that were filled with bikes instead of horses.
I finally met his cousins on our first Thanksgiving together.
It was pouring rain that day and I was nervous meeting the extended family of this man. It turns out they were different than the boyfriend's immediate family in the fact that the cousins had a lot of money. It was obvious from the house and attitude of the family. I was quite shocked that these people were related to my down-to-earth boyfriend who barely had two dimes to rub together and didn't seem to care.
Dinner was nice and they were friendly and inviting in their conversation with me. I told them of the stories the boyfriend shared of their childhood adventures on horseback. They laughed and shared some more and I felt a pang of jealously that they had what I had wanted in my childhood. I asked if they still rode horses and all four emphatically said no. His oldest cousin told me that their oldest pony Misty died just two days before and their mother's horse Cody, was too mean to ride.
I inquired, "Is Cody still here?"
They all began to laugh about how that stupid Cody is still standing out in the field at the spot where Misty had died in the pasture. My boyfriend squeezed my hand hard under the table, sensing that the coldness of that statement would upset me.
After dinner, I asked the boyfriend to show me the barn that his grandfather had built. His aunt shouted out to me to watch for Cody because he bites.
We walked down the path discussing the fact that his cousins just don't feel love for horses like we did. To them they were toys like how my bike was to me. An object of fun and entertainment with no love involved.
As we approached the barn the rain started to turn to sleet and dusk was falling like a dark, wet blanket. I glanced out among the small pasture and there in the center was a black horse, standing alone in the rain with his head hanging down.
I knew that was Cody, paying vigil to his lost friend.
I clucked out to him and his head went up. For a moment the only sound was the pinging of sleet hitting the ground and then a small whicker of acknowledgement.
Cody began making his way over to me and as I watched him walk toward me my eyes took in the horror. This horse was obvious old and was a skeleton to boot. His mane and tail were matted, obviously not have been brushed in ages, possibly years. The old black horse reached me with my boyfriends voice behind me, warning me to watch because he bites.
As he said this, the old horse reached where I was standing and as he was softly whickering, placed his shaggy wet head on my chest and just stood there. I felt Cody's pain and stood with him, tears pouring down my cheeks with the rain and sleet.
"He can't stay here like this" was all I could choke out to my boyfriend.

For days after, I hounded my boyfriend that he needed to intervene and convince his family the most humane thing is to either put this poor horse down or find him a home. Finally, after several weeks of this my boyfriend came home and announced he found Cody a home.
"Are they nice?" I had to know.
He told me of the place where Cody was going he would be able to be retired as a companion horse for two other horses. They were nice horse folk who knew how to take care of an older horse.
I was so happy to know that Cody would be able to live out the rest of life in a safe sheltered place, cared for and with other horses.
My feelings for his cousins was forever altered by this. I never let on to their face but inside I despised them.
I still do.
Every Christmas as an adult the one thing I must do is visit my horse Christmas morning. I made this clear to my boyfriend before the holiday that after dreaming of a horse for Christmas as a child I had to acknowledge my own as an adult. He grumbled about how we would be late to his mothers for brunch and can't we skip it until later. I was seriously annoyed by this and snapped that just because he had horses growing up he couldn't understand my wishes on this day.
We pulled up to my aunts barn at 10AM and I was puzzled as to why my aunt hadn't turned my gelding Merlin and her pony Coral out yet.
I walked into the barn and was greeted by whinnies. Three whinnies as a matter of fact. There in the spare stall was Cody. He was all brushed out and de-matted and looked quite pleased to be there with his head out into the aisle looking to say hello.I turned to my boyfriend and he said," I thought your dream of a horse for Christmas should come true."

Cody in his new home

He had pulled off the greatest Christmas surprise.
Cody went on to fill out into a handsome, shiny black horse who was a sucker for black licorice. He never bit any of us and loved being brushed. He had little nubs left for teeth at his ripe old age of 31, but we managed with special senior feed and soft orchard grass hay to get him back into full weight. He became a pampered pet to my aunt and I, with a special soft spot for my uncle who loved Cody more than anything.

The irony of this story?
Cody died three years later on Christmas night in his stall. He must of had a heart attack because my uncle found him at 10PM that night laying in his stall with a tuft of hay still clenched in his mouth. My uncle called me sobbing that Cody was gone. My heart went out for my uncle who loved this horse so much in his last years, unlike the family who owned him for the twenty plus years they had him.
Don't be sad by the ending of this story. Cody got to live three years as a happy pet and died in a safe, warm place while eating from his unlimited hay supply and cared for by people who loved him unconditionally. For me, this was a second bestChristmas gift that God granted to me.
Merry Christmas to everyone, and I hope all your Christmas dreams come true.

Cody all fat and happy

OriginallyPosted by Kimba66, 12/24/2005 10:05am

Don't forget to track Santa's journey across the world!

Norad Santa Tracker

Peace All

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Aint That What You Said?

  Anyone who knows me long enough, knows there are two things Evanesco hates more than anything. Liars and the shorter days. Oh, and holidays, which are always referred to as hellidays. If you knew my family or my childhood you would definitely get that.

 As hard as I tried to not get in that helliday funk, I did. I really tried on Thanksgiving. I was with friends I love. I had a bonding with the friend who hosted it. I walked away that night knowing that once again, I seem to be the only person in the world who thinks that withholding information, is a lie. From my own personal experience, it's the worst of them all.
 What I didn't expect was to come home to an empty house and the only person who contacted me was an ex who wanted to tell me he was thankful I was always honest with him. Good fer you,buddy. I came home to am empty house on a helliday but I am honest. Good fer me.

 Is it me, or do I sense I am not getting the truth out of life?

Monday, November 22, 2010


Sometimes God, brings you an answer, in the most simple way. I can't say it enough, how grateful I am that I read this book. I was feeling so out of sorts with what has been happening. I can't say that this book is everyone's answer, but it definitely hit home,for me.
Now, go hug a dog or a special someone and remember everything in our life,good or bad, has a purpose.

I understood it now, why I had lived so many times. I had to learn a lot of important skills and lessons, so that when the time came I could rescue Ethan, not from the pond but from the sinking despair of his own life.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

All come True

Video from last blog for my emailers.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Got to Find the Brightness in the Soul

I have never stopped.

Writing,that is.

I just can't seem to finish a blog for the life of me. I am not sure what that is about. I literally find myself shutting down before I can hit the post button. I should note that I am writing this as an introduction,only after I finished this past blog.

My aunt Jan, is rapidly getting sicker by the day. So often, after I leave from visiting with her I want to run back and tell her everything that someone should know what to say when you know they are dying. But, each time I go in to her room and sit for awhile, we make small talk. Usually, about horses and dogs. I try and bring her things that she can still eat. That has been narrowed down to mostly liquids and puddings. I noticed the box of fudge I brought back from my weekend in Rehoboth Beach, was empty on my uncle's bed. It broke my heart because the one thing Jannie loves most in this world is chocolate. If she can't get fudge down, I know it has gotten far worse than I have wanted to see.

"You seem to have a more positive attitude."

This statement came from my recent monthly visit with the psychiatrist that I finally broke down and started seeing this past spring. I had to concede with my friend Dr. Joe and my counselors at the Domestic Violence Center, that my regular physician was in no position to write out proper meds to get me through the testifying at the last court hearing. It is with her help, I am finally weaned off all tranquilizers and have drastically cut back to the lowest dose of Prozac. I decided to stay on that small dose because my migraines have seem to have all but stopped except for the occasional Monday hangovers from too much wine and junk food over the weekends.

A better outlook? It's funny to me, because I read back from years of writing and didn't realize how I had lost that for the past year. I talked it, but it now seems obvious to me,that I was just repeating the mantra that was my survival all these years.

"I am sleeping a lot more."

I was actually waiting for the psychiatrist to tell me I am severely depressed and must have more meds immediately. When she asked my why sleeping more concerned me? I just stared down at my feet for what seemed like an eternity. Probably, it was two minutes max.

"I sleep when he is with me," I finally whispered.

"He" is who I am currently dating. It seems like such a strange thing, but I swear the man is Xanax. I have begun to refer to him as "Xanax Man"

One minute we are cuddled on the sofa, and next thing I know, I am waking up two hours later, still wrapped around him, like a vine on a tree. I don't know what shocks me more? The fact that after four years of having severe insomnia that I am finally sleeping, or the fact that I am not only sleeping, but with a man? With a man who doesn't seem to mind that I am dead weight once I reach REM. Who doesn't take it personally, that I fall asleep on him.

Maybe, this is what people refer to, when they say they want meet the man of their dreams. My dream was to sleep and actually feel safe enough not to wake every twenty minutes in a panic attack. Actually, my dream was to feel safe enough in a waking state, to not have a panic attack, every twenty minutes. Meeting a man was never in that equation. The thought of dating would give me a panic attack.

For now, I have the luxury of walking my dog in my neighborhood, of driving my car without constantly checking the rear view mirror,of taking care of the horses and knowing they are safe, while Jan is slowly slipping away.

I had a brief set-back a couple weeks ago. Prick tried to get work release. I was reminded that what I am feeling may be temporary. Freedom. I only have it until the spring. I came close to writing a "Dear, Xanax Man" letter. I think the one difference this time around is knowing Prick will be forced to finish out the remaining four years in a State prison if he contacts me while on probation. I just pray he only makes contact from afar before he gets his ass back in jail. My feeling of safety is not being taken for granted.My sense of responsibility for someone else's saftey is taken even more seriously. I know the moment he gets out it will be a matter of when and how.There is not one bit of doubt he will not come looking for me.

It was while I was trying to write a break-up letter that I got a call from Xanax Man. The absolute meltdown I was having disappeared the moment I heard his voice. I hung up the phone and deleted the letter. I called Prick's probation officer and made sure he was not eligible for work release. I knew his excuse of back child-support would only give him access to me. He obviously never paid it while we were together. I looked at the bottle of Ativan beside the phone as I dialed adult probation. I tossed it in to my hand bag without taking any. I kept the mantra, "I can do this" going through my head. I think I meant more about not breaking off with someone, more than making what felt like a millionth phone call whose number I knew by heart. After the phone call, I went to Xanax Man's house for dinner and promptly fell asleep on him, afterwards. When I was driving home after leaving his house, I had to pull over to cry. I was so grateful that I didn't hit that send button.

I am a true believer that everything comes to us when our Higher Selves demands it.
The pessimistic person would say,"shit! You have an ex-boyfriend who assaulted you, stalked you for years and dragged you in to court,time after time. Your family is an absolute mess, with half of you barely speaking to each other, and someone you love and represents the horses that you love, is dying. How the Hell can this be good timing?"

Because, without all that bad stuff, I would never know how precious what I am now experiencing is. Prick being in jail has left me free to make the few weeks left with Jan,possible. The fact that I am stressed to the max in losing her, yet able to do so without drugs, is a gift I now appreciate.

The fact I can go on a date at all is something I thought was impossible. To date someone who "gets" what I went through, yet, is sensitive enough to never make me talk about it, makes me appreciate the quietness he surrounds me in.

I believe God set it up for me to finally appreciate Xanax Man. I have actually known him for years. The truth is, I never really took notice of him, other than that he was handsome and seemed nice enough. I couldn't say I ever spoke to him, in any of our past encounters, through our mutual friends. He was just there, in the background, of my self induced chaotic life.

It was after I wrote the blog about my encounter with my Wall that I finally took a chance to allow someone in. That someone happened to be him. I just had no idea at the time what was coming.

What I once took for disinterest or too quiet, I now appreciate that it is an attribute to embrace. Trust me. I will never be quiet. The endless bouncing and non-stop chatter is who I am. But, with Xanax Man I finally felt that part of me that was patient enough to lie in the grass for the light to hit a certain way for me to finally get a photo I wanted. The person who could sit and watch and quietly observe life around me without thoughts of what is watching me? That person who loves to just sit and watch the light refract different ways off the water is still in there. Four years of constant fear has finally lifted enough for me to start living the life I had, only better.

Ah another blog that I have no idea why or what I write until years later. I can look back and gauge how far I have come forward or back. All I can say is that for now, I am really sleepy again. I am so happy for the gift of sleep without taking an actual Xanax. Happiness can have side effects, but so far they have been good ones.

Someone was 'round here asking questions
About someone who looks like you
I said I don't know where you are
Sounded like he was gonna to be back someday
So I told him where you are

She's making it all come true this time
She's making it all come true this time
She's making it all come true this time

This has not been the first time
This will not be the last
He only knew slow moves in the past
I hope you are not too fast to last

She's making it all come true this time
She's making it all come true this time
She's making it all come true this time

She's making it all come true this time
She's making it all come true this time
She's making it all come true this time

Got to find the brightness in the soul
Not look outside to find out where we are
Oh, you won't be satisfied
Until you make possessions of the stars

She's making it all come true this time
She's making it all come true this time
She's making it all come true this time

Someone was 'round here asking questions
About someone who looks like you
I said I don't know where you are
He said that he was going to be back
I told him where you are

She's making it all work out this time
She's making it all work out this time
She's making it all come true this time


Friday, October 8, 2010

Outside the Wall

It's about letting God's light shine through us. It's about a sparkle in people that money can't buy. It's an invisible energy with visible effects. To let go, to just love, is not to fade into the wallpaper. Quite the contrary, it's when we truly become bright. We're letting our own light shine.”
~Marianne Williamson

My dear friend Marie sent this my way. It was perfect timing.
There is one thing about owning a dog. It forces you to walk through your everyday world and stop to sniff the *insert~ roses, mailboxes, bushes, dead squirrel...*
You get the picture.
Not much to say since my last blog. I write a lot but it seems only I can understand what I write.
A friend had told me about a month ago that a shift was coming. He was right. As always it seems to scare the hell out of me when it is happening. It was one mess up after another. I felt the moment I left the courtroom after Prick's sentencing my heart was permanently broken. Between Jan being sick and the final opportunity to have to think about the past three years, I guess I had a full-blown meltdown. Once again it was Joe who had to explain what was really happening. Because Prick's sentencing was a felony charge the court was much more thorough in presenting past violations. What I didn't count on was that a lot of the original assault I had completely blocked out of my mind. I never even told my friends or counselors every detail of that night. When the District Attorney presented me with the police records, my statement from that night was in the folder. I waited a week before I steeled myself up for reading through the papers. I was shocked at exactly how graphic my original statement was. The officer had me write it that night. While reading it I was horrified that I obviously blocked details out by the very next day. I have spent three years concentrating on the stalking issue rather than what he did that night. It seemed to be permanently pushed out of my mind. To read my own words and my own handwriting, was surreal. What I didn't know was after the sentencing the nightmares would start again. I had them for months after the assault. I have blogged before about my struggles with avoiding meds as much as possible. I hated the thought of not being me, even if the me I was becoming was a mess.Eventually the nightmares faded but I know the death of Gwen has never gone completely from my mind. Now I am seeing why losing Gwen is so significant. He finished what he started that night he beat the crap out of me. I believed he stole every bit of love that I had left in my heart. I just haven't realized how much I have pushed people away because of it.
Once again, I ramble. I just don't know why the shift came when it did but I was forced to really look at what was surrounding me. I crawled home in shame and spent an entire weekend freaking out about my mess and watched Jan becoming sicker. I was up for 48 hours straight. Finally, I was awake at 3am and watched Bob Geldof in Pink Floyd's The Wall. Oh, dear God, I have become that mess. Watching that movie forced me to face the music and peek over my own wall that I have been busy building for three years. I can't articulate what is on the other side. I just know that it has always been a part of me. I just thought if I built a wall around it someone would not be able to steal from me the way I believed Prick, did. Now I know that wall just kept me from leaving the hell I created on my own.

Outside the Wall (Waters)

All alone, or in two's,
The ones who really love you
Walk up and down outside the wall.
Some hand in hand
And some gathered together in bands.
The bleeding hearts and artists
Make their stand.

And when they've given you their all
Some stagger and fall, after all it's not easy
Banging your heart against some mad bugger's wall.

"Isn't this where...."

Thank you to my friends who have managed to still be standing and for those who were willing to keep banging their heart against this mad bugger's wall. It's finally falling down

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Songs Of Peace: Exhale and Inhale

Oops. Bad blogger. I hit the send button before I finished the last blog.

Songs Of Peace: Exhale and Inhale

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Exhale and Inhale

It's never a good thing when the phone rings in the middle of the night. Since I receive crappy cell phone signals from inside my house, I have clung to keeping my land line. It was once used as my business line but with the recession, my equissage business has once again faded away. I have my few regulars who schedule a standing monthly appointment. Almost all of them have my cell number. The only time my land line rings anymore is if is my family. Since I am speaking to so few members of the family, it was even more of a shock when the phone rang at 3:30 am.
"Can you meet me at Brandywine Hospital?" It was my uncle who was posing the question. I told him I would be right there. My aunt had been diagnosed with cancer in early July. She waited until as long as she could, to tell me. Both my aunt Jan and uncle Steve are stoic people. She told me so matter-of-fact that at first I thought I misunderstood her. When I asked her where her cancer was she finally admitted to me it had spread everywhere and was moving in to her brain. She then stated that was why she thinks her sinuses have bothered so much. I stood there in the kitchen where she had told me,stunned.

Breathe in breathe out
Exhale and inhale

I know, anyone who already knows my aunt and uncle would not be shocked if either one of them had cancer. I have never seen either one of them without a cigarette. Shoe Man once had an almost meltdown when the three of us unloaded a large amount of hay bales in to the barn. As typical, my uncle had a cigarette dangling out of the corner of his mouth as both his hands were grasping each bale down from where I was unloading from the back of the truck. He has the amazing ability to do work with both hands yet to continue to take steady drags and exhale cigarette smoke without breaking stride. I am so used to this that when Shoe started to anxiously whisper/shout at me that the barn was going to catch on fire, I had to stare Shoe down to keep his mouth shut. He hated cigarette smoke as it was. To break the cardinal rule that almost all farms have about not smoking in the barn...well, it was a lot on my part to keep Shoe from confronting my uncle. When we were riding back home after unloading the hay he asked how I could stand by and watch my uncle endangers my own horses? "Cocksucker is going to torch the whole shebang down." I had to giggle. Shebang. Only Shoe would say cocksucker and shebang in the same sentence.I pointed out that I was keeping my horses there for free, therefore, I have no right to impose rules in someone Else's barn. I figured that they have kept the barn and house (that is heated with wood burning stoves) for 30-something years without a fire. Who am I to say they shouldn't smoke in the barn? I'm pretty sure if I asked my uncle to put out his cigarette he would give me a thoughtful side glance and silently continue on smoking his cigarette, with whatever chore he was doing. My aunt would just tell him to go fuck himself. In fact, I am pretty sure she has said that to Shoe on the occasions when he would speak out about him mowing down their weeds. What Shoe didn't understand is the difference between weeds vs weed. He mowed down their stash and my aunt was pissed. I haven't smoked weed in decades but I am sure it was a hefty amount of cash that was weed whacked. After that catastrophe Shoe Man would only come out to shoe our horses and both my aunt and uncle steered clear of him. That was when I realised that they are both usually stoic because they are perpetually stoned. Hey, I'm cool with that. I keep my horses cheap and close to home. They let me basically squat there. God knows how much riding and harness equipment is stored on their property. I have five horses worth of crap that has accumulated. The most valuable I sold when I bought my house but the rest is in Rubbermaid tubs all over their house and barn.

Breathe in breathe out
Exhale and inhale

When the phone rang next to my bed, my heart was pounding as I struggled without my glasses to read the caller ID. I have no memory other than being confused because I had fallen asleep with my clothes still on and the TV was blaring. I didn't even ask my uncle why they were at the hospital. I have noticed Jan's decline in a matter of two weeks.
As the gliding doors to the ER swished open I glanced to my right and standing outside,smoking a cigarette, was my uncle. I stood there with the glass doors paused open and for a second, was confused. I couldn't fathom that they rushed my aunt to the hospital with a possible heart attack, and here was my uncle, out having a smoke.
He stubbed out his cigarette and walked in to the waiting lounge with me. Even though I have known my uncle Steve since the age of 13 I realised when we were sitting there we really don't know each other. I knew he was a Vietnam Vet. He came back from the war with a raging heroin addiction. Jan's wealthy parents sent him through expensive rehab and besides the weed, I never seen any alcohol or any other kind of drug in their house. When I met him, I knew Jan's parents didn't like him much but I have the feeling she was already the black sheep on her own. My uncle Steve just sealed the deal.

Breathe in breathe out
Exhale and inhale

We sat together in the waiting room with a blaring TV showing Fox News. The room was full of waiting people. For some reason people try and whisper shout at each other after three am. Just as I was feeling the urge to tell an angry woman, "just scream it, for God's sake!" a nurse came out to fetch us.

Breathe in breathe out
Exhale and inhale

By six am, they had Jan settled in a room. They would keep her there to run some tests. They believed her chest pains could of been a panic attack or a reaction to the pain meds she is on. It is basically what the doctor told us. They know her cancer is spreading rapidly. It's a matter of what pain is from what? When I went in to check on her Jan said, "I was hoping to have a heart attack and just get it over with."
I silently walked out of the hospital with those words ringing in my ears. I could still hear them circling around my brain, from ear to ear. I drove to their farm to feed Romeo and Sydney. It wasn't until I had them turned back out that it finally hit me. It was at this same time,same kind of summer morning in August, three years ago, I was watching my horse being put down. She had suffered for seven hours. I just got it over with.

Breathe in breathe out
Exhale and inhale

My relationship with my aunt and uncle is a tough one to explain. Technically, they are not my blood relatives. Jan's sister Judi, was my father's long-time girlfriend. They had never married and had kept separate residences.They had met through me. Judi was my first riding instructor. My divorced dad was immediately in love with her as I was. When she succumbed to cancer in 1994, it was her sister,who was holding her hand as she slipped quietly in to the other side. My father was weak. He still is. He left her in those final days not being able to handle it. I had never thought of it until Jan said those words. She already knew what she was facing. It took Judi four years to finally lose her battle with endless chemo and radiation. Every time she went in to remission we would all exclaim how blessed we were that she got through that round. In the end she was a shell of the person I knew and loved. Barely able to sit up and comatose in the end. Jan's words to me at the funeral were, "Judi would not want you crying. She held out for others and we were all selfish to ask her to do that."

Breathe in breathe out
Exhale and inhale

I sat and stared at the spot where Gwen is buried. I felt Judi was sitting next to me watching Desmond chase butterflies. She would of loved Des. He would of loved her. I willed myself not to cry. I know Judi didn't tolerate crying. If I fell off a horse I got right back on and learned quickly that if I indeed did cry, I would do so inside. She was the one who originally taught me to cowboy up. Like Major League...there is no crying in baseball! No crying in the game of life.

Breathe in breathe out
Exhale and inhale

Exhaustion was starting to creep in. I wandered up to the house that has become my second home. I stumbled in to the back bedroom and lay down in Jan's bed. She has three large picture windows that look out in to the pasture. It was peaceful lying there. I could see Syd and Romeo grazing nose to nose. The cicadas were buzzing and a neighbor began mowing their pasture. It was a good hay year. Birds were chirping, cats began to slink in to the room with the dogs on the bed with me. The last thing I remember was thinking that Judi died in August of 1994. The weather was the same. The summer was ending and the days were getting shorter. I finally felt myself let go and slip in to sleep.

Breathe in breathe out
Exhale and inhale

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Peace Will Come, When all the hurt is Gone

"Where you been?"
I have recently have become aware that I been asked that question a lot. My answer is always the same.
It's not a lie. I have been busy since my last posting. Busy keeping myself from descending in to that abyss of depression or worst yet~fear. I have only a couple more weeks until Prick's sentencing for stalking. That is such a weird word to write. Stalking, to me, should mean something that farm kids do. Like, deer spotting, corn husking, grass stalking. *sigh*
The entire Northeast is trapped in what seems like Hell. Heatwave, after heatwave. It makes the gnats swarm in to clouds. Even if I try and ride before daybreak, Veritas gets eaten alive by bugs. For being such a fat horse he has very thin skin. After trying to ride one especially muggy morning, he finally succeeded in cow-kicking (farm word) bugs off his belly and kicking my foot hard enough to bruise through my paddock boots in the stirrup. I declared a peace treaty with the gnats and have given up riding until I can bitch about the cold and mud.
The one thing that has taken up what was otherwise equine time, is Desmond. Australian Cattle Dogs do not like to be bored. Even he has been grumpy about the heat. I know what really makes him tick is to always keep him busy with new things. Whether it is a car ride, a new trail to walk or even hanging out at the lake and seeing new faces and other dogs. It has at least kept me physically moving in spite of the heat. We both come home at night and collapse in the comforts of central air. I keep thinking I should sign us both up for agility training or freestyle frisbee or something fun. I then walk outside and feel that hot blanket of humidity slap me and I put it off for a future goal. Meanwhile he has settled in to becoming the love of my life. It sort of crept up on me. I never expected to keep him but somehow he just stayed stuck to me. ACDs are often nicknamed "Velcro dogs" and after several months of owning Des I understand the full meaning of the term. He is quiet. He rarely barks. He never growls. Yet, wherever I go, he glides silently at my side. On the occasions he full out runs and plays with other dogs at La Mancha, he makes my heart beat faster with pure joy. He has become a normal, neurotic dog. He is still petrified of children and men, yet slept through a lightening storm that took out a tree in our development.
I have not once ventured to the New Jersey beaches. I took Dru and Tom up on their offer and went to Florida instead. I hate to admit that the one thing I love more than a horse has been tainted since Prick followed me all the way to Long Beach Island. We had a great time and it was actually cooler in the Florida Gulf than it was here in Pennsylvania.
I was happy to only encounter crystal clear waters and white sand. I saw schools of fish and dolphins leaping through the air while chasing after the tiny fish. Not one tar ball or sign of the oil disaster.
It was while I was at the beach and watching the sun set in a burning orange glow that I felt such peace. I realised that Florida was a perfect analogy of what my past couple years have felt like. That off in the distance the sky is burning with oil. A complete disaster yet here I was, enveloped with peace, wildlife, sea creatures and white sand. Peace is the direction you take to look. I know I need to eventually take back one of those places that Prick ripped out of my soul.
The sun finally sank down in to the ocean I promised myself to hold on to that thought. No matter how dismal things may seem, there are always dolphins to search for in the sea.

Hey, emailers! I have been made aware that not all song links show up through email. Since I am still a techno-dinosaur, click on the link to go to the actual blog at Blogger to reach the links that are on that page.

Sometimes I think about Saturday's child
And all about the times when we were running wild
I've been out searching for the dolphins in the sea
Ah, but sometimes I wonder, do you ever think of me

This old world will never change the way it's been
And all the ways of war won't change it back again
I've been out searchin' for the dolphin in the sea
Ah, but sometimes I wonder, do you ever think of me

This old world will never change

Lord, I'm not the one to tell this old world how to get along
I only know that peace will come when all our hate is gone
I've been a-searchin' for the dolphins in the sea
Ah, but sometimes I wonder, do you ever think of me.

Dolphins~ Fred Neil lyrics

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Flower in a Hail Storm

I didn't expect to feel what I was feeling. It was just the shock of seeing it one way for so long and then no more.

I went out later than usual to the barn to check Romeo and Sydney. We have been having hot and humid weather early in the season. What makes it tricky for horse owners is to keep their horses from blowing up on the too-rich grass and ending up with colic or laminitis. Since the flies and gnats are so bad we bring them in during the day. Romeo is more than happy to stand all day in front of the huge livestock fan we keep over his stall. He reminds me of a dog with his head out the window, catching a breeze. As I filled their buckets from the hose I glanced up at the many barn swallows nests we have in our tiny barn. I had counted up to fourteen when I took notice of the pasture outside the back entrance to the barn. It was smooth.

My uncle had finally found and fixed the leaking pipe that leads from the creek in to our pond in the center of the pasture. It is almost three years now that he made that mistake. He hit the pipe when he was trying to bury Gwen. He ended up moving her to bury in another spot in the pasture but the gaping hole where he originally started has been there for three years. Every couple months I would see my uncle out there messing around with PVC pipe and assorted farm machinery. The pond level never went down so we weren't even sure if it was actually ever feeding fresh water in to the pond. It just became one of those things where my aunt would be exasperated that my uncle couldn't decide if it should be repaired or not. So a long snake of a ditch began to form over the next couple years. It was surrounded in yellow tape so the horses wouldn't fall in. I started to imagine my uncle was secretly enjoying the thought of a moat surrounding the pasture. Then we wouldn't be doing constant fence repairs.
There I was, looking out and not quite comprehending what I was seeing. Just a smooth and flat area where the walls around the moat had been growing for three years. Apparently a coworker came out and resolved my uncle's pond dilemma.
Even though it has been three years this coming August, I can't believe how much it still hurts when I think about Gwen's last hours. Seeing the surrounding area finally put back in to place made me imagine the sound of a slamming coffin lid. I jumped a little at the thought and ended up hosing my shoes for a second. Desmond immediately came to my side and looked up at me. The funny thing was he didn't have that usual startled look that he has all the time. He just quietly looked up at me with full eye contact. I knew at that moment he had heard it through me. What an awesome dog.

I was coiling back up the hose when my aunt came in to the barn. I told her the pasture looks nice. We stood at the door with Desmond between us and watched the swallows dive bomb from the barn to the trees outside. Three of us standing and staring at the spot now smooth and bare.
"I told him," my aunt stated in her simple quiet way,"that if that asshole gets out of jail next week and sees that gaping hole he'll know he won."

I just stood there in silence. I don't know if that is really why my aunt finally snapped at my uncle to get the pipe fixed. Maybe she wanted me to know she is thinking the same thing I am. That in a matter of days there is that possibility that Prick will be released and will come revisit the spot that he tore my very soul out of me. So many things in life are beyond our control. I can't undo what has been done. I accept it but I will never comprehend how dark someone can be.
"I think I should get some wildflower seeds and plant them," I told my aunt, as I walked back in to the barn. At least I can take comfort in knowing that every time a flower blooms, a part of Gwen blooms with it.

Lyrics | Eels lyrics - Flower lyrics

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Give me Light

It has been one of those weeks. You know the kind. Everything seems off kilter and I just went a little crazy. I finally had to talk to my friend Dr. Joe who suggested I up the meds. I was sobbing by the time we met last Friday.
It's not like I didn't know this was coming. Prick's release date is next week. The detective from my township and probation, waited as close to the end of his release for the probation violation, to file the criminal charges for stalking and harassment. They did this purposely to add on more possible jail time than take a chance of time already served. This will be a felony charge and if we proceed, it is mandatory I come to court and take the stand. The detective called me early Wednesday morning. I was already up from an all-night crying fest, when he called asking me if it was too early? That was when I cried silently and unable to speak. When I finally composed myself, I realized that my reaction was my brain screaming,"it is always too early for anything Prick related!" I have no idea where the past 10 months have gone. His sentenced seemed long at the time. Now, I was sitting in my car at the farm trying to not pass out because the wind was sucked right out of me.

I started after Christmas to wean myself off all meds. I was completely off the Prozac by last month and was feeling great. I have been riding more, socializing outside more with friends and finally felt that my life was starting to move forward.
It seems funny now, to read my Soccerball post. Up until last week he was my weekend dog. Two weekends ago the insanity of everything came crashing down and at the same time I decided to bring home a different dog.

It was madness to try and bring a dog to the point-to-point races at Plantation Farm, two months ago. One of the volunteers decided that we should take an Australian Cattle Dog to the races since horse people love this breed and it is a dog who needs to be constantly worked. Let's just say, it didn't go too well. The dog escaped her grasp because it freaks out by too many people and it is terrified of men. Every time the announcer called over the loud speaker, The Aussie cowered in fear. After the dog was safely recovered after it broke free, I spent a few minutes cleaning it up. He had wet himself in the van from fear. I did some TTouch and massage on him until he stopped shaking. I gave him a Xanax and he fell asleep in my lap until we got home. I knew Dru would have a tough time placing a dog like this. Aussie's tend to only bond with one or two people and are in constant need of exercise and work to not go crazy inside a kennel or house. My ex, Shoe-Man, owned an Australian Shepherd so I was already familiar through him with the quirks of these types of herding dogs.
An uncommon dog was recently brought to the rescue. A Presa Canario. The only reason I even knew of this breed was because of the dog mauling incident in San Fransisco. A woman named Diane Whipple was fatally mauled by a pair of these dogs at her own front door with the owner standing there and not calling for 911. It turned out that the couple who owned the dogs were working with the Aryan Brotherhood in raising and training this breed of dog to specifically kill, including the two that killed Whipple. The dog at the rescue is a young female. Probably only for breeding purposes, but Dru made the decision to not adopt her out. She will probably become a permanent La Mancha dog because she doesn't want the chance that the dog will end up with the wrong people.

It was morbid curiosity that sent me up to the kennel to see up close this peculiar breed. Other than on the news, I have never seen one in person. She is quite pretty. She looks like a cross between a Staffordshire and a Mastiff. She quietly came up to the front of her kennel and licked my hand. I watched her lie down in a submissive way and she wagged her tail. I sat back and watched her for a minute and then over the other 20-something dogs barking in the kennel I heard it. It was the distinct bark of an Australian Cattle Dog. They don't bark often but when they do, it is a very distinct high pitched yelp.

I walked over and there he was. It was the same dog from two months ago and ad mist the chaos of the two lab mixes that were bouncing around him he sat perfectly square in front of his cage door and was intently staring at me with his ears pricked up. I slowly opened the door and let him out while trying to keep the Labs that acted like they were on Red Bull, inside. I turned around and the little red Aussie was sitting behind me, waiting. I clipped a leash on him and took him out for a walk. Before I knew it, he was in my car and I was bringing him home thinking he would be a perfect dog for Shoe Man. He has a farm and still does calf roping. I would foster him until Monday when he was due to come to trim Romeo and Sydney's feet.

Well, that was over a week ago. Somehow this neurotic little guy adopted me.I ended up naming him Desmond after a character on my favorite TV show,Lost. We have spent a week of figuring out what does and doesn't work.It had been 16 years since I owned a dog of my own. A lot has changed since then, mainly the crate issue. My weekend dogs were older and more mellow dogs who knew my home as well as their own. Deep down I knew if I took a crate home it would be permanent. Amongst the tears and coming to Jesus meetings with Dr. Joe about meds and Dru about crates things started to shift. Desmond was calming down and I was as well. By Friday night my fog began to lift and I could stop shaking in terror. By yesterday, I knew it was working out. He stayed all day in his crate with no accidents while I was at work and then we went to a very loud raucous party at LaMancha to watch the Kentucky Derby. Men were there, but as long as I was next to him, Des stayed calm. I had taken him out to run a bit but he heels by my side even off his leash. If I stop, he sits down and waits. I wonder who spent so much time training this dog only to give him up? His fear of men makes me think someone beat a little of the training in to him. I am so glad for the years with Shoe Man's Australian Shepherd and the years of Dru's Karelian Bear Dogs. We understood each others needs and the job is done. Like the character on Lost, we are each other's constant.

It sounds like a small thing but watching Desmond last night being so brave in this huge party made me see myself in him. We both slept soundly last night. He has obviously taken over Soccerball's role of protecting me from scary things under the bed.

I now play the waiting game. The papers for criminal charges were served to Prick on Wednesday. It can be anytime in the next two weeks that I will be subpoenaed to court. The good news is he cannot be released until the hearing and if we go to trial. If found guilty he could serve up to three years. I am so sad about this. I was willing to walk away three years ago and continue on with life. He continues to try and prevent that. After three years of stalking I have to face my life will never go back to how it was. I just know if he gets out he will only be meaner and more determined.

As I type Desmond is sleeping in his crate next to me. I watch as his paws twitch in an dreamworld of chasing cattle instead of his daily life of inner demons from his past, chasing him.

Maybe it is the Prozac. Maybe Dr. Joe really is right that sometimes we need a little extra help. Looking down at Desmond in his peaceful slumber gives me hope that I can get through the next couple weeks without totally losing my mind or inner peace. That we both can live in a safe place in our head where men don't beat the crap out of you.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Watch This Space

So many times I hit the post button for a blog and then regret it. I hate being angry but I also remember for two years I felt numb. As much as I try and tell myself being numb was better, deep down, I know it is not.
For my private emailers I give out a shout. I was blessedly reminded not to take anything I have worked for the past three years for granted. Thank you, to stupid Oprah Winfrey, for making me stay home sick three years ago and watching her show. She had Gavin de Becker on and he was talking about his book "The Gift of Fear"
All of my life I knew I have had that sixth sense. My mom shares this. She will be sober 25 years this Wednesday. She once told me she started drinking because she knew too much of what she was thinking, was real. We all numb ourselves from truth. It sucks. But I know my gut is right and more often than not I prove too late it was.

I can't get it out of my head. Crap.

Take me down, 6 underground,
The ground beneath your feet,
Laid out low, nothing to go
Nowhere a way to meet
I've got a head full of drought,
Down here, so faroff losing out
Round here,

Overground, watch this space,
I'm open to falling from grace

Calm me down, bring it round
Too way high off your street
I can see like nothing else
In me you're better than I wannabe
Don't think 'cos I understand,
I care, don't think 'cos I'm talking we're friends,

Overground, watch this space,
I'm open to falling from grace

Talk me down, safe and sound
Too strung up to sleep
Wear me out, scream and shout
Swear my time's never cheap
I fake my life like I've lived
Too much, I take whatever you're given
Not enough,

Overground, watch this space,
I'm open

I fake my life like I've lived
Too much, I take whatever you're given
Not enough,

Overground, watch this space,
I'm open to falling from grace

For all of my friends and readers who have been supportive over the years, thank you. I publicly will say just remember to trust that gut before you hit post. I am grateful God sent me someone who was nice enough to remind me to not give away what I worked for. Let's see how this one goes.Hopefully I will be around a long time to let you know if I have any regrets, later.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Happiness is a Warm Puppy

One reason a dog can be such a comfort when you're feeling blue is that he doesn't try to find out why. ~Author Unknown

Most of my friends now know about my weekend love. He is a dog and his name is Soccerball. Because of my busy schedule and incredibly long work days it has been impossible for me to own a dog full time. Since Dru and Tom have nine permanent canine residents at their animal rescue it seemed the perfect solution was to allow me to bring one of their nine home with me, for weekends.
For a few years it was a Karelian Bear dog, named Czar, who came home with me on most weekends. He still lives at the rescue but has become almost completely deaf and overcome with arthritis. The last time I brought him home with me was in November. Czar tried to jump up on to my bed and ended up crashing to the floor. He was so humiliated (and yes, I swear he has that human trait) he refused to look at me for the rest of the weekend. After watching him sleep in my closet instead of the dog bed I bought for him, I made the difficult decision to no longer bring him home with me on the weekends.
My family is going through a rough patch at the moment. I love them all very much but I think my own personal demons of the past three years started creeping in to my relationships with my immediate family. I opted to walk away from trying to fix something that is too upsetting for me. Christmas was the hardest. I chose to not spend it with family. Dru's husband Tom called me Christmas Eve day and invited me for the night. I took them up on it. It actually was a really nice way to spend the night. We sat by the fireplace, ate a nice dinner and talked about fun things. Before I left I went down to the barn to say goodnight to Veritas and tell him he was the best part of Christmas.
I opened my car door and there in the passenger seat was Soccerball. He is one of the Pitbulls that Dru has made a permanent resident. Tom and Dru came out of the house and told me I should not be alone Christmas morning. Soccerball sat in the car, thumping his tail in pure joy with the thought of a car ride. I suddenly felt like the Grinch:My broken,small heart, grew three sizes that day. "And then - the true meaning of Christmas came through, and the Grinch found the strength of *ten* Grinches, plus two!"
So, the two of us went home together that night and the hole that was left where men have come and gone as well as my favorite dog Czar, was finally filled with canine joy.
One thing I have learned about having Soccerball on the weekends. Neighbors talk to you when you walk a dog. Since I live in a development, I am forced to walk a dog on a leash. Czar was a less approachable dog. Like most working farm dogs, Karelians make little eye contact and are stand-offish with strangers. Soccerball loves everyone. I cannot take a quick walk without neighbors stopping to chat him up while he wiggles his whole body in happiness. Through Soccerball, I have finally gotten to know neighbors that I never met before.
Today, a neighbor I had met on my doggie excursions, finally installed new windows and treatments for my home. I cannot believe how different my house looks with new windows! It is like a whole blast of light came in to my home. The best part was the big step in allowing a person in my home. One of the reasons I kept putting off renovations or repairs in my home is the fear I still carry from the past three years. It is much easier to have someone I know and trust come in to the house. Now, he and his fiance both volunteer at LaMancha.
So, once again, it is a fur friend who helped me make a big step. Who knew it would take a Pitbull to help me find trust? Take that, Michael Vick.

Monday, March 22, 2010

"Go on, Let it out!"

This week's quote on Barking Dogs comes from Randy Grim's Don't Dump The Dog:

"In the end, a person really can't get too upset about barking.

There are so many people out there, from politicians to spouses, whom you'd love to squirt with lemon juice or place inside a shock collar, that a little barking from the dog shouldn't seem so annoying.

I think it is because we spend all day listening to the rants of others, and by the time we get home we feel we can finally scream SHUT UP and not worry about being arrested. In my house, I only reprimand for nuisance barking. If the doorbell rings, I tell my crew, "Go on, let it out," because I wish so much that I could."

Thanks to Heather aka Fastfilm, for recently reminding me I never tire of Oasis and Youtube.

I am flattered that I received enough private emails wondering why I wasn't blogging?
Hmmmmmm. Snow? Well, that's over with.
Spring? That helps. I am back to working six days a week.
Mostly, it is because I hate always blogging crappy stuff. It's not that anything really awful is happening, I just feel it needs to work itself out without me barking it out to the world.
But hey, I'm still around. I'm reading your blogs. I'm excited and sad that my friend Marie is finally coming home from Uganda. I will miss hearing about the amazing life she has carved out as a missionary. Amazing in this day and age that anyone is so selfless.
I have spent extra time at the farm. It is being outdoors that keeps me happiest. We have had unseasonably warm weather so I was so glad that my equine clients are floating back up to Pennsylvania.
The timing is perfect because my car needed extra work and I am finally doing the home improvements that I have postponing forever due to lack of money. I am booked up to six weeks in advance for both hair and horses. I certainly cannot complain in that department when it seems so many are still losing their jobs.
So, there is my minor nuisance barking.
BTW~Don't Dump the Dog is really a great book. It applies to a lot of things in life.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Please Remember Peace is How We Make it

So, here I sit. Staring in to my monitor. I have every intention of writing a blog. What often happens is that I start and then think to myself, "even I don't want to read my crap."
I either hit the "draft saved" button or better yet,"delete."
If only life were that easy.

When there is not much to say, I sit quiet and listen for answers in songs. I found this gem a while back. George Harrrison is actually my favorite Beatle as far as lyrics go. I just thought this was a cool take on an all time favorite song.
So, I am coasting along in my quiet little world, trying to enjoy the peacefulness of being alone. No drama, no men, no court dates. Just me. Isn't that a nice little boring blog?
Peace, Love and Light, my friends.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Sledding down the Rocky Steps (Philadelphia Art Museum) 2/10/10

*sniff* brings a tear to a Philly gal's eye.
BTW~ it is 8pm and still snowing like crazy.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Snow storm December 19th 2009

Just a really pretty snow