Color me purple

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Lately, I’ve been stressed out with a migraine headaches, nausea, costochrondritis and an elevated blood pressure.  I suffer with HBP (and take three meds), and have since my fifties.  It runs in my family and has killed several relatives on Mom’s side.  I had a red-headed cousin named Sandy, who dropped dead in her forties. I myself have had a heart attack and a stroke.

Thus I try to do things to relieve stress.

For example, I retired before I was 65 because I thought the job would kill me.

I’m not going into all the reasons I’ve been stressed lately, but one has certainly been David’s health.  I wake up in the middle of the night and begin to worry needlessly.  He’s in great shape for an 86-year old who just had major surgery.

Adson TV and in various publications for suggest coloring as a way to relieve stress. I thought why not perhaps I didn’t color enough when I was a kid.  I bought myself a book, Adult Coloring 101, flipped through it to find information on the materials one needs to begin this restful, soothing hobby, and  ordered them from Amazon.  I began coloring yesterday. It went like this:

I sat at the kitchen table, opened my pencil boxes, spilled the pencils all over the floor three times because they are hard to hold, broke several points then looked at the pencil sharpener and tried to figure out how it worked.

Finally, I had everything assembled and selected the image I wanted to color.  I began.  Everything I’ve read had said this was a great way to meditate.  But my brain did not care.  I have never been able to meditate.  After all, the Myers-Briggs personality test said I was a thinking sort of person, and if you are one of those, its hard to turn it off. Obviously, the Myers-Briggs was designed by a touchy-feely kind of person.

My thought process went like this:  John Wittman must be at the door, the dogs are barking. I hear John outside working on the roll down shade on the porch.  The dogs finally stopped barking.  Johnny is asleep near my foot. My back is cold. My eyes are acting funny again. I want something hot to drink. The birds are finally quiet. I’m supposed to be meditating. Empty your brain. I wonder if Troy will come tomorrow, the Clethra is drying out and will be dead if we don’t get it in the ground. I wonder if the dogs woke David?  Meditate damn it meditate.  If I don’t fix that chicken tomorrow it will spoil. and so on and so forth as I worked away.

Soon I had to sharpen some of the pencils.  I picked up the sharpener and examined it again. When I tried to figure out how to empty the darn thing I became interested in the mechanics.  It’s German-made, I thought, so it should have an ingenious opening to remove the shavings,  I found it, chucked the contents, and made myself a cup of tea while I was up.

David came through the kitchen looked at my handiwork and said, that’s beautiful, we should frame it. Now he’s colorblind so I don’t know exactly what he saw, but I said no, its crap and its not going on a wall.

All this reminded me of the “paint-by-numbers” kit I bought years ago.  I framed that darn thing and hung it on a kitchen wall until it became covered in grease. One day, “I lost it.”

David says, “that’s creative” No, it’s not I replied, its canned. You just color inside the lines or all over if you like.

I left all my supplies on the kitchen table and went to bed around 9:00 last night because my migraine headache had a migraine.  I slept fitfully fo for 11 hours getting up multiple times during the night.  My back was killing me where it got chilled, and my wrist hurt from the repetitive action of using the pencil. The TMJ wasn’t so bad, however, and I didn’t stay awake if I woke up, which I did, to apply a Salopas and take Tylenol. I can hardly wait to get started coloring today, after I drive David to the hospital for therapy and get that chicken in the oven. I sure hope Troy calls because that Clethra looks really ratty.

33 thoughts on “Color me purple

  1. And strange as it may seem, I can say I had the colouring books recommended at a lunch this very week lol. So funny to hear all these older women confessing to commandeering the books and pencils they have tucked away for when grandchildren come to visit 🙂
    I used to buy those ‘find the word books’ – the ones where there are pages of letters and you have to find the hidden words. They did stop me dwelling on things but at one time they almost took over my life – couldn’t put them down. Then I grew tired of them and went back to my knitting.
    Hope the headaches ease up this week.

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  2. Pingback: Coloring books are not just for children | Dkzody's Weblog

  3. ha ha ha sorry to laugh at your expense but too funny Dianne. Reminded me of past years when my attention was pulled in a million different directions at once. I have a new way to divert my thoughts now when they become troublesome, I edit my life in the past to have a different outcome. It’s like writing a book in my head. Since no one is going to see what I think, I can be outlandish, outrageous it is a lot of fun. I just close my eyes and picture a past point in time and go from there. You know how you think of the perfect come back later when you are no longer face to face with that person ? Now I can do replays until I get the perfect “take that you twat”.

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    • What I want to know is why do kids, grandkids and probably great grandkids have to make the same mistakes I did? Yes it’s true, I will be a great grandma in May 2016 and Connie will be a grandma. The girl who said she would ever have kids is going to have a kid. At least she will be four years older than I was.

      But that doesn’t bother me nearly as much as the kid who just got out of the hospital after suffering a concussion from falling off a bar stool. 😷

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      • I asked the daughter who married and had a child young why she would repeat my history, she said “I made it look easy “. Middle daughter broke three generations of divorces and is going on years of marriage , didn’t have a child until she was 36 same age I became a granny . Youngest didn’t marry till she was 40 , still got divorced no kids though. I have no real answers . I know why I did what I did. Wanted the family I never had and I was crazy in love .

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      • Why we loved Patsy Kline’s song. ‘Crazy’. My middle child is doing quite well. Connie’s number 2 is looking good. John never married. There is hope for the next generation. We always have hope. 😍

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  4. I hope your migraine (or at least your migraine’s migraine) is better. Your post made me laugh because I can relate. Never tried coloring, but I’ve tried meditation — even took some classes. And your thought process is familiar. (They did remind me not to say ‘damnit meditate’ of course. They say let your thoughts just come and go without judgement. But mine never want to ‘go’.) Besides reading a really good book, I find that working with my photos (editing them, making pretty pictures) and doing harder crossword puzzles (NYT Thursday-Saturday levels, for instance) are the best ways for me to forget problems and worries. My head gets so filled with what I’m doing there is no room for anything else at least for the time these activities take.

    The thing about all of these is that they are hard on aging eyes of course. So I need to get back into practicing ‘staring into inner space’ too!!

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    • Thanks Sallie you made me laugh. Good for you working the crossword puzzles. My sister does that also. I have the NYT app. However, I’m not very good at it. The Thursday puzzle will give me a headache. Do you find practice helps you improve?

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      • Oh definitely , I’ve been doing them for years and you do learn some tricks… I have to print mine out though and work them the old style way on paper. Have tried to do them on pad or computer in the interest of saving trees, but it is way too much work.

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  5. You’re the second adult I’ve come across this week who is into coloring books. I’m beginning to think I should try the little one a friend sent me, along with several types of pencils and markers. Goodness knows I could used less stress in my life.

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      • I’m addicted to using coffee mugs as pencil cups. I still have several special ones from my years as an editor. Of course, they’re already full of assorted pens and pencils. I, too, may have to buy something appropriate.

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  6. You know you can do an alanon meeting online. 🙂

    Yup, it’s such a crappy disease. Yesterday my eldest called twice. Her bloodwork is a disaster….high blood sugar despite loosing weight. Her blood pressure is dangerously high too, and her liver is in very poor condition. One eye has a diabetic cataract. She talked over me until I stopped tryimng to say any thing. Horrible and frightening disease. Perhaps the denial part is worst. You deny the alcoholism, then you go into denial about all your other diseases too. The doc has her on two pills at last.

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    • Sad to hear she is having trouble with HBP. Yes, it’s crap. And Diabetes is the worst. David has a mild case and is taking Metformin. Some day the researchers will find the genetic link that ties Alcoholism and Diabetes. He cannot eat the crap he once ate, although I let him drink the odd cola. Terrible stuff.

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  7. What can I tell you? Life sucks.
    Lately, I have been going to bed quite frequently throughout the day to rest my back, realign my spine, close my eyes to rest them, and clear my brain.
    Hey, it works. I get up after 30 minutes or so and feel refreshed.
    Then, I go to bed a few hours later and do the same routine.
    No coloring for me.

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  8. It’s hard not to worry about things that haven’t happened yet. But the good news is, they haven’t. Why not enjoy life until they do (or more likely, don’t).

    As for the migraines, forgive me if I’ve told you this before, but it is more or less a miracle for me. A friend told me about this years ago and it’s great. Take whatever medicine you take ( I use Ibuprofen) and then stand in the shower with the shower nozzle pointed directly at your face. Then let the water hit your face and head as hot as you can stand it for as long as you can stand it. I do it in intervals. You can feel the pain “drain” away as you do this. It is kind of a quick relief and gives the meds a chance to work as well. Hope it helps.

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  9. I have a coloring book I sometimes throw some attention towards. It’s not my thing either, but I don’t take it anywhere near as seriously as you are. I think you need to lighten up. Keep the stuff near where you sit and pick it up now and then, put it back when you’ve done all you want. Don’t see it as a job but just something to fill some free moments.

    Friday I am going to Columbia Elementary, where I do my chaplain duties, and do an afternoon of crafting for the afterschool program. We are making haunted house pictures and monsters.

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  10. Hello!
    I really wish you well, regarding your health. Even my grandfather is nearing 80 and even he suffers from more of less the same conditions.
    By the way, it is a new thing that I’ve come to know about, the adult colouring book. I really want to know if they’re going to be able to help you meditate. When I tried meditation for the first time, pretty much my mind was wandering off to places like yours… 🙂 🙂

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