Our Backpack

I used to love to tease with my husband, Gary, that if everyday life as a momma and wife got to be too much, I would fade away. I would calmly go to the closet, put on my walking shoes, wrap my arms into my backpack, and walk. Walk away from it all. Then he would take my hand, I would look into his eyes, and we would start laughing. After almost 21 years of marriage, we both know that whatever has happened in our life with each other, we really have handled it together.

He shared with me not too long ago, that when I very first mentioned my backpack (way back when), he was just a little envious. I really would never have gone far. And I wouldn’t actually walk, I would drive my truck. I would go down to get an iced tea somewhere and pull a book out of my tinkerbell backpack. It is just big enough to hold my phone and a book, my sunglasses, and my keys. I would sit in a parking lot and read for about 20 minutes. Miss everyone and head back home. There will be a time and many travels for a backpack, but it will be ours. A backpack we share together.

It will hold first aid items, a couple of sandwich bags with snacks,two water bottles,his knife,my lipstick,a change of clothes for each of us,the camera,our phones,the tablet. We will take turns carrying our backpack. It will get rained on, sweat drenched, and plenty of fresh air and sunlight. Our backpack will follow us on some pretty cool adventures. Adventures that will be amazingly done together. Jennifer 

Michael

A handicap comes in different ways. Some individuals are able to live a productive and fulfilling life even though they may not have full use of their body. My first experience was feeding, loving, and living with my older brother who was mainly only able to move his head and eyes. He could communicate with groans and noises, that maybe, if I was older, I would have tried to figure out if they resembled words in any way. Was he trying to talk to me? I know he wanted to play and laugh and cry and act out his frustrations.  He was almost three years older than I was, and he left to live at a hospital called Muscatatuck State Hospital. I remember him leaving when he was eight, and never coming back until I was 25. I know we visited him a few times when I was a child, and I know it was the most awful and very horrible emotional times in my life. I would get so sick that I would vomit for days. My legs would ache so badly at night, that I spent many of those nights crying and suffering through terrible headaches and stomach cramps. My brother passed away shortly after he returned to our hometown. He moved from the hospital to a nursing home. I could only visit him once because he had staff infection and I was nursing my second daughter at the time.

After getting past his death, I began to see him out in public. I felt him close by me several times and I tried so hard to find him in my dreams. I cried so many times, that finally my husband suggested I write a book about him living instead and us taking him on fun, happy, adventurous trips.

Never Really Knowing Her

I have worked four years for an elderly woman with the beginnings of breast and lung cancer. The cancer has, in the last year, taken over her feet, and works it’s way up her legs. I deep clean her home once a week and every day come for an hour to feed her dog, feed her, make her smoothie,coffee,and lay out her clothes. She also has hospice 3 days a week.  

She has become wheelchair bound, and one of her biggest joys is watching her birds. She loves her politics and has mentioned traveling all over the world with her husband and children. She was an Hospital Administrator in San Antonio. After that, I could mention that she is very giving, outspoken, and loves the Lord. 

Until this morning, I never really knew her. I’ve only known her as an older woman, one needing assistance. I was hearing her morning program and that they were skydiving. I yelled out from the kitchen that I thought that would be so much fun. I want to do that soon! She yelled back. “I’ve already done it. And the thrill of flying is amazing!”

Here has sat a woman, that has accomplished wonderful things in her life. She has been one of the girls in the Roller Derby, traveled the world, skydived, rode a motorcycle, and sped down the side of a mountain in a seat on a rail. Each visit I hope to pull more adventures of her life out of her, and hope to get to really know her.

Just a Funny One I wanted to post :^)

My last post was about Dreams. My dreams. The same dream. Time after  T I M E. So now I wonder if because I wrote about my wandering nights, the dream changed? What does this mean? I am at Walmart looking through jeans trying so hard to find my size. Then Gary walks up and starts having me try on very expensive jackets. Jackets that are not colors we like, or the style we would pick out. Then this very elderly man is beside me, handing jackets to me that are too large. Then I am at a creepy mall. But in my dream, I am actually happy because I am on the 2nd floor. Which in my dream, I realize I came up the escalator. I was comforted to still have steps in my night travels. 

Still at the mall, Gary says he wants to go on this walking trail that is there. All inside. It has footprints that you follow all along the way. He goes first, and I have to wait my turn. But, I am not wearing any shoes. I have come to the mall in just my socks. (I do have clothes on) HA! Thank goodness. The lady says I may borrow old shoes that have been left and are now in lost and found. Ewwww. But I look through the box, none are my size. I squeeze into a size 5, I’m a 6 1/2. (I don’t dream about numbers or sizes) Then the lady says I have to tell the managers I will offer up a special prayer for them for letting me borrow the shoes. So, I walk over, and the man says, “Don’t worry about it, just buy us new toupee’s”. To which I said, “Alright, I will”. Which sent them into huge fits of laughter. 

Then I realize I have to go to the bathroom and I am so lucky that the next place over is a restaurant. I hail down the frightened looking waitress and she says I will find the restroom to the left, but beware! The manager will attack you. He will chase you down if he catches you and realizes you did not pay for food. So I race around the corner and hear him right behind me. I quickly crawl under a table and spot the restroom about 7 feet away. I make a run for it, but stop when I realize the mall is dark and has closed.

I tell my husband, Gary, that I had the same dream AGAIN. He just smiles, but this morning I actually had him laughing. So he has now decided we will read our books and fall asleep to music.

Great. I now remember I used to fall asleep to music as a child and I dreamt of animals chasing and eating me. 

 

Searching Through The Night

Dreams

 

They rarely let me rest. Dreams run me, or rather walk me everywhere, all night. Dreams make me wonder, they bring out the very curious creature in me. What is wonderful, is that I seem to remember them each morning. Most people claim to never dream or can not give detail on their evening jaunts in dreamland. 

I have done a bit of research on the computer and have also looked in my dream book my mom gave me. Climbing up and down stairs, all different kinds, seem to keep me quite busy. I walk on basement stairs, stairs in homes to reach the next level, all wooden, never carpeted. Outside, I am on cement stairs that are out in the middle of nowhere,freestanding. Most are not very high, but some are 300 feet up in the sky. When I am that high up, I am overlooking neighborhoods, and on my way down.

Neighborhoods are almost a big part of my dreams, but not as often as stairs. I am walking up and down hilly streets. Sometimes, I wander into one of my actual old homes that I lived in at one time in my life. 

My biggest dream really adds the stairs,neighborhoods,old homes, a search for a person, and throw in a 100 foot,round as a semi,snake. This one shakes me up the most and most times I wake up crying. I am searching for someone around corners,up stairs,and get a glimpse of them out the window or as I step outside, standing at the top of a staircase. It is usually always raining when I am in the house, running around. Once outside, I can never find this person, and just resume walking,stairs,and more homes and neighborhoods.  The enormous snake is hiding in a huge mess of bushes, trees, and vines and to the right side of the street.  Sometimes the snake is off a dirt path that leads in to  the woods where I absolutely have to go through to finish my search and wanderings. 

Always curious to know if anyone out there dreams like me! 

Jennifer

Saturday Morning Deja Vu

Friday night movie night with Gary-Incredibly Relaxing.  Everything in life slowed waaaaay down and got better as the night progressed. The popcorn tasted like gourmet. We topped it off with Cheez-its and leaned back and relaxed. The movie theater held a total of 6. Us included. So quiet. We enjoyed the movie Lucy and went with whatever it had to offer. We both like Morgan Freeman a lot and I like Scarlett Johansson. When we got home,  for some reason we talked about week night evenings when we were children. Get home from school, play outside till supper, do homework, watch half an hour of tv, (parent’s pick), read, go to bed around nine. 

After our talk on how similar our weeknights were, we seemed to wake up and relive childhood Saturday mornings. Get up way before our mom’s, like around 5  in the  a.m., switch the button on the television, hear it turn on, watch the same regular line-up of awesome, wholesome, cartoons.  Then by 8;30 or 9:00, begin deep house cleaning. My husband said he had to mow the lawn,work on the cars, and do outside house repairs. I had to start at the ceiling practically, and work down to scrubbing the floors. Then we headed to the store for the weekly grocery shopping.

So this Saturday, we decided to have a little deja vu. We wandered out to the living room and watched Foster’s Home For Imaginary Friends for like two whole hours,  then really, really cleaned, then grocery shopped. We hauled out our trusty old crock pot and slowly cooked the recipe of the weekend-Pork Tenderloin with onion, chicken broth, and sauerkraut served with creamy sweet basil mashed potatoes. 

We have changed the family schedule somewhat from growing up in the 70’s and 80’s. We have relaxed more on bed times, how much tv is watched, we try to get work done around the house quicker, but we still have a lot of time together and we listen to our kids talk about their own fond memories of a little bit of their Saturday morning deja vu. Memories. Jennifer