RheumaBlog

Same dragon, different day.

Hi all.

Sorry I haven’t been posting lately. There’s not any one particular reason for my silence; instead, I think there’s a whole mixed bag of reasons my muse has deserted me.

  1. Summertime. It’s hot. I feel slow and sluggish when it’s hot; I don’t enjoy being outside much unless it’s very early morning, before the sun has a chance to get high enough to sear. I also don’t sleep very well in the summer – I toss and turn all night, too warm with even a sheet to cover me, but I get chilled without one. Grrr. Even writing becomes a chore in the summer, as my mind is so busy being hot and cranky it hasn’t much space for creativity. I’m pretty odd, I know. And I’m looking forward to autumn, as usual. It’s really my best time of year. The sun is still out most of the time, but the oppressive heat heads South. I like that.
  2. Financial worries. I’m absolutely not alone in this one, so I won’t go into detail. Suffice it to say that the eagle is screaming at the Wren’s Nest.
  3. Two semi-housebroken dogs. Jeez, I love dogs, but this is getting rough. Finny is improving, but Shadow has gone backwards and is now leaving me a giant, smelly gift every morning in the living room, deposited there sometime in the night. The swamp-cooler, which cools the whole house, is in Mr Wren’s room, where Shadow also sleeps, so the door to that room cannot be closed. I’m going to have to insist that he be tied in the room somehow. Sigh. The fences in the back yard are still not dog-secure, and the money to have them fixed doesn’t exist anymore. Mr Wren is unconcerned and unwilling to deal with it. (Mr Wren suffers from depression along with his physical disabilities.) I might be able to figure out how to do it myself, but I have my own physical issues where that’s concerned. Anyway, I’m quickly losing patience with the situation and am contemplating new homes for both dogs. This will entail a fight with Mr Wren, but something’s got to give, here. I’m starting to lose my mind.
  4. Rheuma. It’s fairly mild, mostly in my hands and wrists, but constant. Same with the bursitis in my hips. As for that, the pain isn’t severe enough to warrant cortisone injections; if I have to have them, I’d rather wait until I really need one, since there’s a limit as to how many you can safely take over a year’s time. So, while the pain I’m in is mild (and occasionally hits “moderate”), its constancy is wearing me down and making me glum. I don’t like that.
  5. Joblessness. My own and future SIL Matt’s. We’re both looking. Hoping. It’s the pits.
  6. I’ve been re-reading my various attempts at short stories and novels, and working out which are worth another try, which need to be incubated further, and which need to be deleted for their own good and the good of the world. This has filled up a fair amount of my free time as I edit and make notes. It’s not writing, but it’s similar. Right?

And that, my friends, is why I’m not posting much lately. It’s all too-too. And it will change and things will look up, they always do. Time works. I’m still enjoying the daily gifts: while Finny and Shadow are making me nuts in the housebreaking department, they frequently have me rolling with laughter, too, as they play together. Finny is so little, quick and smart; Shadow so big and galumphing. And, we’ve decided that he’s pretty much a blockhead. Lovable, but dumb as a bag of rocks. The consensus: frequently hilarious.

My gardens are going wild. The wisteria is in its second bloom of the season, the trumpet vines on the arbor to the side garden have giant orange trumpet-shaped blooms, and the hollyhocks are taller than I am and full of blossoms. We have planters full of summertime lettuces and, while those tomatoes never got planted, the local country fruit and vegetable stand has some great Romas at decent prices, so I’m not missing them too much. Same for the zucchini, which I love.

Things will look up. I’ll check in again next week – maybe sooner. Sometimes, forcing myself to break through the writer’s block (even if just to bitch) throws open the floodgates. Maybe it will happen this time.

Until then, I hope this post finds you all enjoying the summertime and feeling well with a minimum of pain – or better, none at all. I’ll continue to comment here and there so you’ll know I’m thinking of you and sending my care your way.

Update: Writing in spite of myself did bring up a small flurry of brain-and-body activity. I remembered to mention Shadow’s new nickname: Cal, which is short for “calamity.” So far, we’re down two ceramic pots in which potted plants resided, victims to Shadow’s sliding turns as he chases Finny from family room to living room at approximately 40 mph. He frequently wipes out.

Also, I took photos.

Our trumpet vines are back! We didn't get many blossoms last season. Mr Wren had cut them back severely (they tend to take over) and they hadn't quite recovered when summer rolled around. Another turn of the year, and here they are!

Hollyhocks are old-fashioned, but I love them. We planted them in several different spots around the garden years ago, so now we have them every summer from July through August.

The wisteria, which is quite mature now at more than 14 years old, flowers two or three times each season. I'm not sure what kind of lettuce Mr Wren planted here, but I think it's supper tonight.

These are old-fashioned climbing damask roses, planted 12 summers ago and now covering a rebar arbor outside my study window.

31 thoughts on “Hoping for open floodgates

  1. Joan says:

    It’s good to hear from you, even if it is to b*tch. I’m low on the writing desire too. It is just so hot and it makes me soft and lazy.

    Love the trumpet vine. I wish I could find some for our fence.

    Like

    1. Wren says:

      Hi Joan! I’m glad I’m not the only one who feels this way. Some garden/plant catalogs offer trumpet vines for sale. I bet you could find some online, too, with a google search… 😉

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  2. Lene says:

    The roses are gorgeous! I love that blowsy look.

    Sometimes you lie fallow. It’s necessary for the floodgates to open later (that metaphor got a bit mixed, eh?). On the other hand, my new favourite quote yelling at me from a Post’It on my computer is from Roger Ebert: “The Muse visits while you are writing, not before”.

    😉

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    1. Wren says:

      That darned Ebert. He’s a really good teacher and a great example, isn’t he. Shoot. Just what I needed, an expert movie critic and all-around-nice-guy-excellent-writer, shooting down my whiney excuse.

      These are my favorite roses out of the many varieties we’ve got. You’d get the better photo of them though, anytime, Lene. 😀

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  3. Polly says:

    Sorry you’re having such a rough time. Been missing you! :o) The garden looks fab though, and I LOVE Calvin and Hobbs – ages since I’ve seen them! :o)

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    1. Wren says:

      Hi Polly! You know, it’s the garden and all the flowers that keep me going through the hot summer — it’s nice now that everything is well-established. Less work for me. 😉 And C&H has always been my favorite comic strip, even now so many years after it stopped. Calvin always makes me laugh.

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  4. Lisa H. says:

    I love your number 1. I feel the same way about summer. I also don’t sleep as well, even with air conditioning and comfy bed. I feel like every year I’m just waiting it out, hiding out in the house until it’s over and a proper season comes back around.

    Your garden looks beautiful! 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Wren says:

      Ah, another kindred soul. Thanks for the garden compliment, Lisa. Hope you’re feeling well!

      Like

  5. Jules says:

    I too agree that summer is a rough sleeping time. Gentle hugs to you my friend. I am sending positive thoughts and vibes to you and your SIL for finding work and for you to find your inspiration again. I will be here when you get back- whether it’s to gripe or to share good news. Be well.

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    1. Wren says:

      Jules, you’re so sweet. Thank you for the positive thoughts, the encouragement and patience. And the virtual hugs. We all need a few of those, real and imagined, sometimes. 🙂

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  6. carlascorner says:

    Hang in there, Wren. I think lots of us have the summer doldrums, which is not to downplay the seriousness of some of your issues — summer just makes it harder to deal with things and enthusiasm for anything but cold drinks is hard to come by. The cooler weather, and hopefully some resolution, will be here soon. Keep us posted when you can and feel like it.

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    1. Wren says:

      I’m hanging in, Carla. It’s funny — today I don’t feel nearly as stressed as I did yesterday. Maybe those solar flares had something to do with it? Hope you’re feeling well — how’s your shoulder?

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  7. Mary says:

    Glad to see you back. I’ve missed your posts. Although I generally love summer, this one has been rather miserable heat wise and I do find myself wishing for fall.
    The flowers look great.

    Like

    1. Wren says:

      Thank you, Mary. Fall IS coming. I was out and about yesterday afternoon and noticed that some of the Chinese pistachio trees along the highway near town have set berries — which is the harbinger of fall around here. By the end of the month, a few of them will start putting on their fall colors, which are just spectacular. Little things give me hope.

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      1. Wren says:

        Oops. I meant, Chinese PISTACHE trees. Not pistachios. These are ornamental trees — utterly non-descript in summer and totally spectacular in fall. They don’t bear nuts.

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  8. Mary says:

    Oh and as for the dogs, can you put a baby gate up. The air still flows but the dogs stay in the room. I had to do this because one of my dogs was going downstairs at night and wetting the carpet. When they were younger I had to stack 2 one on top of the other because they could jump one gate. Just a thought.

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    1. Wren says:

      We have baby gates. Both dogs leap them at will. (sighs) However, putting two up on the swamp-cooler-room door at night is a GREAT idea! Why didn’t I think of that??? You’re the best. Thanks! Hope you’re feeling well …

      Like

  9. robin says:

    wren, that calvin and hobbes is hilarious. perfect. I hope the floodgates open for you and stay open, until everything is drenched in your wonderful words!

    Like

  10. robin says:

    p.s. your flowers are beautiful!

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    1. Wren says:

      Robin, thank you so much for your kind words. I do love to write, and the fact that I’ve felt so blank lately definitely cramps my style. I got a chuckle from that C&H strip, too. It was perfect. How’ve you been feeling? You’ve sure been busy lately!

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  11. Lana says:

    I know all about the financial part. I am so warn out and the timing is bad to cut my hours.

    Men for some reason don’t notice the money worries and woes like we do. I work more than my husband, in and out of the house and for some reason; he tells me that that is my choice. The only choice I really have is to be broke or work harder. So, Mr. Wren wants to keep the dogs, Mr. Wren has to help deal with them. I find other ways to force my husband to comply. For one, I refuse to do his laundry. He comes home and he sits down. I don’t sit down until my head hits the pillow. I don’t pick up his supplies, shampoo, conditioner, shaving cream, shavers, etc. – that is his problem. There is always a way to force them to help. Sometimes, I leave him alone with the kids. He walks and I tell him I am leaving. I don’t give him time to complain.

    I am sorry about how you are feeling. Sending healing thoughts your way.

    The plants and the flowers are beautiful – you have one heck of a green thumb there.

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  12. Wren says:

    Thanks for the words of support, Lana. Financial issues really are one of the hardest things in life to cope with — and we really have no choice in the matter. I’ll just keep looking for work — eventually, I’ll find something. I’ve become much, much less picky about the type of work I’ll do and no longer hope to find anything like the job I used to have. Ah, well. Ce la vie. Time to make some major decisions.

    Hope you’re feeling well, Lana. It’s Thursday — just one more work day and then the weekend! Hang in there. Sending healing thoughts your way, too. 🙂

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  13. RA SB says:

    I’ve missed ya, Wren. And I’ve been praying hard for your job situation. I still have this book here for you, and I am so so sorry I never sent it. Could you email me your address once again, Sweetie?

    FYI, someone came onto my site today, and being the brave soul they were, left this message under the name “Anonymous:” You are an idiot.

    So what do I do with that? How is that a criticisism I can take seriously? I am perfectly ok with people not agreeing with me, but to say that I am an idiot is just not even true. I need your advice, Wren.

    – RA SB
    “K.”

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    1. Wren says:

      Hey, SB! I miss you too when you’re not posting! You always make me chuckle with your wiseacre attitude — and then think because in between all the superb*tching, you’re bringing up serious points and asking excellent questions.

      As to your commenter: Even here, on blogs that aren’t political or particularly controversial, there are “trolls,” people who read blogs mainly to argue mindlessly or toss insults around. My advice? Ignore, ignore, ignore. It’s pretty obvious that “anonymous” deserves the “idiot” title him- or herself. Meh. Don’t waste your time on this one.

      Hope you’re feeling good, m’dear. And I’m looking forward to reading a new post from you soon. 🙂

      Like

  14. MissDazey says:

    Reading the comments and your responses to them…not much I can add. But of course, I will. I know you are so encouraging to everyone else when we are having those awful days. (which we all have) I’d like to return some of the positive energy back to you. It does seem things just gang up on us ever so often. This extreme heat is not helping, is it?
    Is there anything I can do for you? Tell you a joke or sing a silly song. I sing in the “key of flat” Can I send you virtual daisies to go along with your beautiful old-fashioned climbing damask roses? Hugs! MissDazey

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    1. Wren says:

      Oh, Miss Dazey, just putting in your two-cents worth gave me a lift and a big smile. Thank you! I’ll take your virtual daisies and put them virtually on my desktop. As for singing … well. When I sing, chickens a mile away keel over dead and cactus plants wilt. How about we just let the non-tone-deaf among us do the singing? We’ll just enjoy the tune. 😉

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  15. Cathy says:

    Wren, you do have a lot on your plate right now. Things are going to look up soon. I just know it. Good things happen to good people and you are one of the best! Sending good thoughts and an extra big hug!

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    1. Wren says:

      Wow — I could FEEL that hug, Cathy! Thank you so much for the kind words and good wishes. You’re right, of course. This is a rough patch for me, but it’s also important for me to be mindful about what I can learn from it, and to remember that “this too will pass.” The gifts the world offers us come in many different forms; I sometimes forget that hard times bring just as many of them as the good times. I just have to step outside of myself long enough to look. Walk in peace, my friend.

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  16. RA SB says:

    Thanks for the advice, Wren. I was worried I was the only “idiot” blogger. LOL. I will start working on my new post tonight. Reading a great novel right now called: “These Is My Words.” Have you read it? If you like historical fiction, then check it out.

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  17. Terry says:

    I have been feeling the same way. It has been so hot for the last month, I haven’t felt like doing anything. I work and clean the yard up every week, I didn’t even ride last week and may not this week. You have a lot going on right now, this is just a speed bump in the road. Things will get better, hang in there.

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  18. Nessie says:

    Lovely, lovely flowers! Your garden looks amazing. I have inherited my mum’s love of flowers — and her black thumb, too. Oh well. There’s always time to try again.

    And I, too, can’t wait until it’s cool! I’m not meant for North Carolina summers.

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