I’ve been slightly obsessed with the windows in my second story home. Many of the windows are on the larger size and Jeter likes to situate himself so his paws are propping him up on the window sill. My big fear is that he will attempt to chase something he sees outside of the window and the screen will get pushed out with Jeter to follow. Ugh.
To lessen the chance of this frequently imagined tragedy from ever occurring, I generally only crack the lower window, opting instead to get my fresh air by pulling down the top window which is beyond Jeter’s reach. Now that I’ve resolved my own personal window anxiety inducer, I’ve cast my attention in other directions, at other screens that have caught my eye. Like the two I noticed last weekend during a walk.
The first were more an issue about a lack of screens, to be specific. As I was looking up at building near Lark Street, I noticed a 4 story building with open windows but no screens. I felt a little uncomfortable about the lack of screens, as my imagination kicked in and I started to picture small children and animals tumbling out of that gaping hole some forty or fifty feet up. Then I wondered shouldn’t there be some kind of window guards or something? You know those things that prevent a lower window from being raised beyond a certain point? I did a little research and it seems like there is an ordinance (Ordinance Number 62.81.06 ) but maybe code enforcement needs to direct some attention that way?
Jeter and I next made our way through the park and up New Scotland and over to Academy. I couldn’t help but notice a first floor window screen leaning against the front of a brick building. Naturally, my first thought was that the screen had been removed by someone either exiting or entering through the window. Is that a weird conclusion to make?
Eyes may be the windows to the soul, but open windows and screens cause fear in my heart.
It looked like this starling.
Apologies in advance for this post’s title. I don’t intend it to convey any disrespect, it’s more my attempt to emotionally remove myself from an incident which I found to be upsetting. Here’s what happened…
Over the weekend, my son came across an injured bird in the lawn next to our house. The poor guy was lying in the grass on its stomach looking uncomfortable and afraid. Naturally, Jeter was very interested in the bird, although not in an aggressive way. I think he was just happy to finally get close to one of those “things” that tease him with their ability to flit about as they visit our front porch feeder.
Twice, Jeter got close to the bird and it responded by hopping away, inadvertently landing on its back both times. Each time, I ever so gently rolled it back into its seemingly preferred position of belly down, an act which didn’t cause any apparent additional distress. I brought the hose to the bird and dripped some water directly in its mouth, which it seemed to appreciate. Beyond that, I simply didn’t know what to do.
As expected, by the next morning the bird was dead. I considered what to do with it and concluded that digging a hole and burying it really wouldn’t be much better than simply picking it up and placing it in the trash. I mean, at this point, what was the difference? I’m okay with my decision on how to dispose of the bird, but I’m questioning my actions relating to what I did when the bird was suffering. To me, it seems unreasonable to bring a “wild” bird to a veterinarian for medical attention, but should I have taken it somewhere to be euthanized? I don’t think I could have “put it out of its misery” myself, but should I have tried to find a means to do that? What have you/would you have done in the same situation?
I’ve come to realize that I don’t do well with pain, at least not pain of the emotional sort. As a matter of fact, when someone seriously hurts my feelings, I get angry. Really, really angry. Like I practically see red and have a tendency to behave in an irrational and borderline insane way. It is not pretty.
Physical pain is a different story, though. I’ve experienced some pretty painful things – unmedicated childbirth, separated shoulder, multiple surgeries on various parts of my body, and nothing as caused me to truly lose my sh!t.* I’ve developed some skills along the way to help me cope, things like focused breathing and visualization have gone a long way in making me able to contend with severe discomfort.
As long as it is my own pain, that is. I don’t do as well with other people’s pain. When someone I care about is hurting, I’m good with trying to make them more comfortable and doing my best to provide them with whatever they might need to get well again. To a point. If it feels to me that there is a lack of positive progress or a wallowing in the pain, I find myself stepping off. I guess I just can’t handle it.
What are you more able to tolerate – physical or emotional pain?
*Delivering that baby with Pitocin and without pain meds was probably the closest I’ve been to out of my mind with pain.
There was a phrase a couple of years back that became so ubiquitous that I developed a physical response to hearing it. Each time someone uttered “It is what it is,” the hair on the back of my neck legitimately stood up and I began to exhale loudly. The phrase annoyed me, I think because it seemed so passive, so completely relinquishing control. Not my way, I guess.
The phrase that I’m hearing kind of frequently now is one I find less irritating – You do you. My hippie wannabe son has been dropping it on me for quite a few months, yet it hasn’t even begun to wear on my nerves. In fact, I kind of love it and I find myself smiling each time I hear it. You do you.
During my run tonight, I was thinking that nothing so perfectly illustrates the transition from It is what it is to You do you as Caitlyn née Bruce Jenner. Olympic hero and put upon parent to a collection of 10 (?) children, Bruce Jenner could have elected to continue flirting with Caitlyn, perhaps indulging his desire for female attributes and accoutrements exclusively out of the public eye, but instead, he decided to do him. Or, more accurately, her.
I can’t imagine the conflict experienced by a person who constantly feels that their external self does not accurately reflect their internal reality. It’s hard enough to look in the mirror occasionally and behold an image that doesn’t match the way we’re feeling – where did those lines and wrinkles come from? I still feel like I’m 22! The continual clash between personal perception of self and the visage we present to humanity can’t be anything short of perpetually jarring.
At 65 years of age, Caitlyn Jenner was introduced to the world in a way that has caused a social media frenzy. Some folks are having a difficult time reconciling Bruce with Caitlyn, are struggling to accept that a man who became an international hero by asserting his athletic prowess in one of the world’s most ancient events, prefers to define himself as female. You know what? It is what it is. You do you. All the best to you, Caitlyn Jenner.
I switched handbags this week. I’d been using a beautiful green one since early fall and it was time for a change. I peeked inside a couple of cloth bags until I came across a red bag that I hadn’t used for a while. It suited my mood and I lifted it off the shelf.
I began placing my items in the bag, filling the various pockets and compartments. In one of the inside pockets, I came across a concert ticket stub from 2008, Neil Young at the Garden. What a great time that had been and what a long time ago it was. Using a handbag for the first time in 7 years or so is almost the same as having a new bag. It’s almost like it became brand new again…
Which reminds me of a story I may have already told here. It doesn’t matter if I did because it’s one of my favorite stories and I’m telling it again because it’s my blog. Many years ago, my friend Mary Panza told me about a conversation she had with her grandmother, a woman I never met. Her advice, upon learning of the state of her granddaughter’s hymen, was simple: “If you don’t have sex again for seven years your hymen will grow back and maybe some man will want you.”
The take away? Putting something on the shelf for a few years can make it seem fresh and previously untouched. I’m loving this “new” bag.
Pre-bath, at the dogpark
In case I haven’t mentioned it recently, I am absolutely smitten with my Jeter. Seriously, I don’t think I would trade him for the real Jeter, if the opportunity came my way. He is an absolute love. I’ve never had a white dog before though, and his fur, beautiful as it may be, is freaking me out. It’s kind of everywhere, regardless of how often I vacuum.
So, Jeter’s fur and my leaning-heavily-toward-the-dark-side wardrobe don’t really combine for the best look. I’ve learned that lighter colored lounge wear and denim are my best bets for around the house and I consciously avoid donning my blacks and blues until I’m walking out the door, but, I still feel like I’m waging a losing war. My only consolation comes from the knowledge that Jeter, who loves his bath, is one clean dog.
Speaking of clean, specifically dry cleaning, am I alone in thinking it is outrageously expensive? I do my best to avoid buying “dry clean only” garments, but still find myself with some items which I’ve been afraid to tackle on my own. To offset the expense of my dresses and cashmere and/or wool sweaters, I took advantage (or so I thought) of a recent Groupon offer for Best Cleaners. Last week, I dropped off 2 simple cashmere sweaters, 1 sleeveless silk dress and 1 sleeveless gabardine sheath.
When I went to pick my clothing up, I expected the total bill to be approximately $40, to which I intended to apply one of my $20 vouchers. I was shocked to learn that my balance after the $20 Groupon was applied was $48, meaning the total was originally $68. Is that normal? Is that really the cost of maintaining a wardrobe?
What do you all do? Handwash? Are there special settings on your machine at home which you utilize? I just bought my first lint brush, but I don’t think it will erase much beyond Jeter’s presence from my clothing. Help!
It was a busy weekend, filled with soccer, long walks, friends, sunshine and household tasks. Jeter got back in the game with some dog park playtime and an attention grabbing amble through the neighborhood. I did a little cooking, some cleaning and even a more personal maintenance task – for the first time in many years I colored my own hair.
I’ve got to say, I’m pretty pleased. Don’t get me wrong, I know that my stylist does a wonderful job with my hair, but her schedule is really limited and there was something really appealing about being able to color my hair at home at my own convenience. Factor in the price ($15 vs. $110) and it seemed like a good idea. After reading some positive things about an online company called ESalon, I decided to give them a shot at mixing up a personalized batch of color for me.
My color, “dark brown copper golden,” was arrived at following a series of questions about my natural color (who can remember that?), current color and a few other details. I also uploaded a recent selfie for my color consultant to use. The site encouraged setting up a regularly scheduled delivery of hair color, but I declined that service for now.
From order to delivery was approximately one week and I was quite pleased with the package I received. My little box contained the color and developer, two pairs of gloves, an application brush, individual packets of color and conditioner and products to prevent staining along the hairline.
Saturday afternoon I gathered some old towels and got busy. 25 minutes later I got my results… My ultra blonde summer hair was now a richer shade of strawberry blonde, warmer and more even than my previous color. Now, it’s a semipermanent formula so I don’t know how long it will last or if my hair is going to fall out in clumps, but, today I’m happy with it. I think my satisfaction is due in part to the fact that I wasn’t attempting a dramatic change, more of a slight deepening of current shade. While I have no intention of permanently breaking up with my professional colorist, the price, convenience and results make ESalon an option that I will consider again in the future.