One of the neat things you discover from writing is the more you write the more you remember. Unfortunately, it is just as easy to forget again. I had a memory bubble at 5:00 AM this morning and then fell asleep and forgot it. I suppose if I was more enterprising, I would keep a pad and pen nearby and write things down as they popped up.
I kept a journal beside my bed for years. If I had a dream, I wrote it down. If I remembered something via a memory bubble, I wrote it down. I have stacks of old journals, appointment books, photo albums, and diaries upstairs if I didn’t throw them out in a cleaning frenzy. I was in one group after another and saw one counselor after another for over 40 years and wrote those experiences down too.
Conflicts with children, altercations with neighbors, irritations at work..all went into my records. I even wrote down a few good things too, like the happy experiences traveling with David and other occasions such as the day I got out of the hospital following a stroke. That was a good day.
David drove me to a bird store in Herndon Virginia where I went nuts and bought six love birds. I recall we stopped at a 7-11 and David bought Dove bars on the way. I had so much fun eating the Dove bar and getting the birds. Dove bars bring back happy memories, although I seldom eat them anymore. The love birds are another story.
I have one of the original love birds, Eddie. Eddie doesn’t like me at all. One of my friends described love birds as flying can-openers, and that’s about right. If you are ever bitten by a love bird, you won’t forget it. Talk about a misnomer.
Whoever named love birds must have been drunk. If you are thinking about a small pet bird, get a canary or parakeet. Avoid love birds. I shouldn’t say that really. I did have a love bird who was sweet. But Juju died. Eddie, her mate, survived. I have one of their offspring, Sammy (in the photo above Sammy is eating one of my home grown chile peppers). Sammy takes after his father, unfortunately.
Memories can be good, bad, or in-between. I had trouble with bad memories for a long time. Fortunately, now that I am older and wiser (hopefully) I can put memories perspective. I think I finally made peace with my parents, although it took a long time. Making peace with others took much less time. Harboring resentments hurts no one but yourself.
Alan, my dog groomer informed me yesterday that Jane, our groomer for over 20 years had developed uterine cancer and undergone a radical hysterectomy. Jane left suddenly after all those years, and we were quite distressed. Apparently, this ailment began before she left. After she left, we kept using the same shop because Jane left no forwarding phone number where I could reach her. Alan told me she always “loved” grooming my dogs. I knew she did, she even bought two Poms from the same breeder I used.
A radical hysterectomy seldom stops this cancer if it has advanced to other organs. Emily, a gal I worked with at the Census Bureau went through the whole scenario, radical removal of this and that, but it was too late.
When I feel sorry for myself because I underwent a radical hysterectomy in the late 1980s, and my health was never the same afterwards, I think about the alternative. Although these kinds of cancers do not run in our family, other kinds of cancer do. You never know what is lurking in your own body.
I will turn 70 in a couple of days. Age 70 has been my goal and I think I will make it. My next goal is to reach age 78 and the break even point on my annuity. It is not a huge annuity, but the idea of outliving it is appealing. When I took my retirement from Verizon, I had to decide whether to take a lump sum and invest it myself, or take a fixed annuity tied to Verizon. I am fiscally conservative, so I let the company do the investing and send the payout to me. Just as well, because I would have invested it in the stock market had I taken it out and you know what happened in the past six years. Okay, it looks like the stock market is recovering, but I could have lost my shirt. Ditto my 401-K which I invested in Government bonds. If the US defaults on its debt, I along with others will have lost every thing. There was a time when I would lose sleep over this, but not now. All that journaling and getting in touch with my hopes and fears, as well as the past, has left me serene. My birds, garden, dogs, and David do the rest.
Check out the link below for live cam shot of a falcon and her babies.