It Will Be Dead By Morning

But it wasn’t.

My stepdaughter called us late one evening with a sad story about a baby squirrel. She called her dad and I could only hear his half of the conversation.

Awww, how cute. Awww, how sad. No. No. No.

No to ‘will you take it?’

No to ‘can you save it?’

No to ‘can I bring it over?’

His last words were, “Do not bring that animal to our house.”

I had been able to squeeze in a question or two during this conversation and learned that the kids she worked with at the pool had found a baby squirrel. A little one that had been crying all day under the dumpster in the parking lot at the country club. They were trying to feed it and save it and would we help.

I told him to go ahead and let her bring it to us. My logic said by the time we were able to tend to it it will have been away from its mom for more than 24 hours and there is no way it will still be alive. My logic said it will be dead by morning, so we will not really be taking on the care of a baby squirrel. My logic said  we would only be taking on the burial of a baby squirrel.  We took it and I fully believed my logic would become fact.

It was not dead the next morning. So I got on the web and googled many, many, many questions about how to save a baby squirrel. Then I went about saving him. This is the story of Sheldon the squirrel and how I saved him and at the same time, how he saved me. This is the story of how I prayed to God for something to fix my sadness and how God answered, with a squirrel. It’s going to take a while. Get some coffee.

I realize now, looking back, that when Sheldon came to me I had not been in a good place for way too long. With the deep, deep sadness comes apathy. I didn’t care, actually, I couldn’t care, about anything. I’d nap a lot, sit on my computer, eat unhealthy foods, decline invitations, neglect housework, have no desire to cook. The effort involved in just trying to make the decision about what to cook was too much for me. I don’t think Bob understood that when I asked “What would you like for dinner?” I was actually asking because I couldn’t make the decision.

So his answer of “Honey, everything you make is so delicious, I don’t care what you make.” was meant to be a compliment. He really is that good to me. It could be taken as flippant but he means it from the heart and my head knows this. A depressed brain on the other hand treats words like a kaleidoscope treats glass. What goes in looks one way, what comes out, how it is interpreted, is not anything like the original.

My reaction to his response is totally irrational.  I feel like I have just asked for help and he is refusing to help. So screw it, I’m not cooking, you can have whatever you want, I am eating ice cream. And I do. For dinner. For more nights than I care to admit.

It gets worse, this kaleidoscope thing. Later in the week I decide to cook. I can cook, I make good stuff. I make a meal and  my sweet husband says how delicious everything is and the depression kaleidoscope turns it into a passive aggressive move. My brain convinces me that what he is really saying is, “It’s about time you actually took care of me, acted like a wife, stepped up to your end of our partnership and cooked a meal.” And I decide that is absolutely the last straw, I don’t need his attitude and don’t cook for the next eight days.

The only thing that made me happy  then and in the days to come was that squirrel. The only thing that I was able to do consistently was take care of that squirrel. The only thing that made me smile, gave me hope, made me feel worthwhile was that squirrel.

This is a long story. I can’t write it all out in one day. Please come back and read on tomorrow.


Does This Still Work?

Gosh, I think it’s been two years since I’ve been here. 😦

Do you know how many of my posts on this blog are about the fact that I haven’t blogged in so long? Too many.

I am a non-sticktoitive kind of girl. Aspirations abound. Visions of sugar plums…no, visions of great success dance in my head. But the dancing stops. Projects and blogs are left untouched for days, weeks, months, years.

“I will post all the projects I want to get done on the blog and track my progress!” I will use the blog as a journal to get my life going again. But then I become overwhelmed. My busy life takes precedence over all else. But you know what? I don’t have a busy life.

Up until a week ago I only worked part time. Which would leave plenty of time for productivity or blogging or finishing projects or cleaning the house. Or playing Runescape. Which is a game for adolescent teenage boys. A game I love. A game that I have set a timer for. A timer that will let me know that it is time to harvest, or check my ships, or cap at the citadel.

It’s a time sucker, worse than Facebook. But I love it. I can get lost there. It’s a time waster. But I have no desire to do anything else. It allows me to get lost.

Get lost? From what? I have a very nice life. I do not have problems of great size. I no longer have kids to take care of, I can pay my bills, I go on lovely vacations. I have no debt to speak of. My health is great. My marriage is great.

And yet…I waste time. I am not productive. I abuse myself for this.

My husband recently had a big surgery, rotator cuff. With it comes immobility and pain. Physically the recovery has been better than he expected but mentally it’s wearing him down. My perpetual pumpkin of happiness. My personal bringer up of  gloomies is fighting the fight.

We were discussing depression yesterday. There is no definitive thing that causes it, it just is. I think I have been battling it something fierce the last few years. Lack of desire for anything. No motivation. I can’t care about anything.  Proof that it has been going on for years? The birthday countdown. The birthday countdown brought me so much joy and yet I have been unable to muster the energy to do it. I love the birthday countdown and even that can’t pull me up.

Do you ever sit at the beach? The ocean beach, with a tide? Do you ever see something floating on the top of the water, seaweed or whatever it is? And it comes in towards the shore and is then washed away. In for a foot, out for a foot. In. Out. Constantly moving, floating but never really getting anywhere. That is what depression is like.

So many of you will say “Gosh, but you’re still so funny.”  “But you get up everyday.” “You laugh.” So many will say, “I never would have guessed.” Because, like the little floating seaweed. I can keep moving and give the impression of going somewhere, doing something. But I am simply moving with the ebb and flow of life. Not really going anywhere.

I am not interacting with life. I am letting life move me rather than the other way around.

I need to journal it out.

Does this still work? The blog. The blogging. Do I still have the ability to do something?

Does this still work?

It has to. I am going to be double nickels this year. (So frightening that I can’t label it with the real number.) I don’t want to slide my way into the next decade of my life. I want to take giant strides towards it, arriving with a flourish, with stories to tell, with memories to take me on the the next decade. I want to arrive at 60 with a bang and fireworks and happiness and joy.

And an awesome outfit.



>To our health

>My husband is over 50.  52 to be exact and he is a bit of a drama king.  It keeps life interesting.  Now, don’t get me wrong, he is not a whiner, or a complainer, he’s just a bit over the top with things.  Let’s say he is passionate. I think that is pretty politically correct and polite to boot.  And for the record I adore him.  He makes me laugh everyday and though his drama can be exasperating at times, I will say for the most part it teaches me.  Teaches me patience.  It has also made me wiser because quite often to dispel the fear of imminent death I have to do some research on the internet.  Facts are my weapons.

This is my second marriage.  After the divorce I prayed a lot.  Mostly for Him to step in to take control as my controlability (I do tend to make up my own words) was on a fast track to depression, slovenliness, depression, weight gain, depression and some low self esteem issues. I may have thrown in a prayer or two for patience as well…God sent me Bob.  Prayer is answered.

Last week Bob got some blood work done.  About three days later the nurse called with the results and amidst wails of “I’m going to die!” we learned Bob’s cholesterol was a little high and that perhaps he should take a look at the zone diet.  (PC for you need to lose weight!) I tried to calmly explain that a few simple dietary exhanges, some walking and smaller portion sizes would be an easy fix for this…he started calling around for cemetary plots.

These are all things Bob and I have been working on for about a year.  We have trouble sticking to it.  I think the worst part is that I hate vegetables.  Hate ’em! Can eat a salad with the best of them but hate the idea of spending the time chopping the  ingredients for a salad so those don’t get made too much. I never serve veggies.  In my house, if I cook, you get meat and carbs and dessert. If we go out I generally just eat dessert and french fries.  Can you hear my internal organs screaming for something healthy?

So, to save my husbands life and to live a healthier one I am trying to make more veggie dishes.  Most are disguised.  I have found some wonderful websites, have a collection of great cookbooks and rip pages from a lot of magazines.  Here is my effort for today.

Butternut Mac and Cheese.  Butternut squash, whole wheat pasta and cheese.  It’s the same color as KRAFT.  I made it today as I have most Wednesdays off but will not bake it until tomorrow.  I got this recipe from ‘A Veggie Venture’.  It’s a great vegetable side dish resource on the web.  She also has variations of the Weight Watchers One Point soup which Bob has for lunch most days  I do not like the idea of cabbage in soup but I do sit next to him while he its it hoping for osmosis. After he it’s eat I do not sit next to him as it can bring on a little gas.  Please don’t recommend any gas removing products as Bob enjoys this expelling of air often exclaiming “Better out than in!” among many other clever sayings.

I am also going to make chicken fingers…this meal is kinda like a little kids paradise.  A propos no?