“God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, wisdom to know the difference.”
Most of us in recovery are failed control freaks. Read those words again. You and I have been miserable failures at controlling our lives. Lord knows we did our damnedest to cajole, manipulate, wheedle, urge or threaten loved ones, family and friends to think and do the ‘right way’ which, of course, was always our way. I see some of you out there denying it, but let us just take a moment of truthful inventorying our past behavior before claiming innocence. Yeah, just as I thought. Guilty as charged!
Sometimes our game of controlling others actually worked and we felt victorious. But our success came at the expense of ruffled feathers, resentments, anger from our victims. The end result was that we distanced ourselves from…
It’s never easy. The routine is the same. Staff explains the procedure and what we should expect. He is taken to another room to be weighed and prepped. We sit in the exam room, try to comfort each other,
“Yes, this is the right thing to do for Rocky’s sake. He has been suffering.”
Returning Rocky to his human’s arms, “5 and 1/4 pounds,” the tech announces.
Good God, he lost another 2 pounds. Never was a large specimen, but over the past few months the weight loss has been quite noticeable. Loose skin holding together a scrawny skeleton.
the tech shares as she shows where the IV has been started. Rocky doesn’t seem to care about all the attention he is receiving. His eyes, once the most beautiful yellow pools imaginable, are pale and dull. The opiate seems to be taking effect as he leans into his human’s arms.
The rush of memories which this creature has lived for us brings tears and a momentary wish to stop everything,
“We can make him better, let’s just take him home and love him as ever.”
He loved riding on the dashboard of his Freightliner trucking for America.
My humans walk me on a leash when we have time to stop at a truck stop. Tonight, one of my humans left the side box door open. I’m going for a walk by myself. I’m a cat, not a sissy dog that needs to be walked on a leash. The air is fresh and alive with scents new to me. The most enticing smells are coming from the field of sage and cacti in the field behind our rig.
I knew Rocky was missing from the truck when I began the routine checklist before heading out on the interstate to the next destination. Normally he was very attentive to activity on the truck and wanted to be involved. But, not tonight. When I noticed that the side box door had been left ajar, my fears heightened. Who knew where an inquisitive cat could be exploring. The fields behind us were coming alive with night life – wild dogs, coyotes, snakes, hawks and owls. A small 6 pound cat would be a tasty morsel. Got my shoes on and cap, grabbed a flashlight and started my search. “Rockee, here kitty, kitty, time to leave. Rockee.”
I hear my human call for me but, dangit, I’m just having too much fun. Critters out here in the weeds I have never chased before. And I’m running without a leash around my neck. Doesn’t get any better than this. Oh shit, what was that? Just came swooping down at me like an airplane. Yeah, I know what airplanes are, I’ve been to a few airfields in my life. Been to Offutt, Tinker, Eglin, Dover – you name it, I’ve been there. “Swoosh!” Oh shit, there it was again. Maybe I should head back. Don’t want to miss dinner.
“Rockeeeee, where are you?” I’m sending up prayers now. We have to be in Phoenix by daylight and there is no time to search for a wayward cat. One more lap on this path and that’s it. We have to go. “Dangit Rocky, get back here.” I hate snakes – especially when they slither across the path in front of me. “Rockeee!”
Those dogs I am hearing don’t sound like the two poodles I know from back home. I need to run faster, I’m hungry and scared. What’s that up ahead of me? It’s a human, but is it my human? I’ll just jingle the bell on my collar and hope for the best. “Jingle, jingle…….hey there, yoohoo, it’s me, Rocky.”
I am about to give up the search and head back to the truck empty-handed. “Oh Lord, one last plea. Rocky’s a good boy.”
Jingle, jingle, jingle.
Music to my ears. Turning around, there I see Rocky sitting on his haunches trembling five feet behind me. He is so upset and distraught that the body tremors are jingling the bell on his collar.
“I knew everything would be cool. I’ll just sit here and allow my human to pick me up, hug me and then scold me for running off.”
WHEN THE CAT YOU LOVE BECOMES A MEMORY, THAT MEMORY BECOMES A TREASURE. unknown
Sweet dreams, Rocky.
May all your road trips be safe, may you forever have salmon to eat and may your next life include me.
Remember when mom or dad scolded you for touching the hot burner on the stove after they had repeatedly warned about the resulting burn? Guys, remember when dad advised you about easy, unprotected back seat sex and Dr. Wilson had to prescribe penicillin? Sure, we’ve all been there and done that.
But, we learned our lessons, didn’t we? Our discomfort and need for medical intervention made us wiser and better prepared for our next adventure in immaturity. We also learned to heed the advice of those who loved us enough to guide us in paths of conventional wisdom.
So, with today’s revelations that the POTUS and FLOTUS have tested positive for covid-19, should we smile and gloat, should we pray on bended knees for speedy recoveries, should we apply political ramifications to their unfortunate situation?
No, we should be learning another lesson. The scientists have been telling us for months…
Well, here it goes folks. WP is forcing an old dog to learn new tricks. Trust me, Gabby doesn’t adapt well, he growls when unhappy and bites when angry.
I tried to link to YouTube videos explaining how easy this new feature is, but, in the process lost my religion and scared the cats. So, today there will not be links to YouTube. And if the paragraph alignment makes no sense……don’t blame me.
So, I am going to curl up in bed and take a nap. Grrrrrrrrr!!!
John Lewis knew he had few days left on this earth, and he left a powerful message to us all to be published on the day of his funeral, today. I let his words speak for themselves …
While my time here has now come to an end, I want you to know that in the last days and hours of my life you inspired me. You filled me with hope about the next chapter of the great American story when you used your power to make a difference in our society. Millions of people motivated simply by human compassion laid down the burdens of division. Around the country and the world you set aside race, class, age, language and nationality to demand respect for human dignity.
That is why I had to visit Black Lives Matter Plaza in Washington, though I was admitted to the hospital the following…
Welcome to my little get-away. Do you like it? Before we settle in let’s toss some of the excess baggage. There’s no room for those resentments about the past nor worries about tomorrow. Get rid of that backpack of responsibilities weighing you down. Settle in under my palm tree and let’s look just beyond the horizon. It’s calling us, isn’t it? Rest for the soul.
You have probably noticed that there is not a house under my palm tree, not even a hut or tent. Running water would be nice, but what use is a bathroom without a house? There is no shed for excess belongings, no lawn mower, no shovels, no wheelbarrow. No need for a storage unit across town in which to store all the stuff that won’t fit into the attic or cellar or garage. Pretty sparse by American standards – actually downright spartan.
Stuff – it’s the American way. More, more, more to satisfy an insatiable thirst for possessions that will prove to our friends and neighbors how successful we are and to ourselves that we are special. Then, when we tire of our stuff, we throw it into the dumpster and immediately run to Wally World to buy more stuff. Stuff, stuff, stuff.
As we ponder the horizon from under our palm tree, let’s consider what our greed and Madison Avenue’s advertising genius have done to us as a society. The USA consumes an enormously disproportionate share of the earth’s resources to produce all the conveniences and goods we are accustomed to having. One would think, therefore, that we are the most content, well-balanced, satisfied nation on the surface of the planet enjoying the most advanced living standard. Really?
What went wrong? We bought into capitalism’s promises of fulfillment and happiness hook, line, and sinker. We were snookered by the rich cats living in opulence surrounded by all their stuff which, by the way, is much better than our stuff. Oh no. Not only did they lead us astray, they got away with the really good stuff and left us with the junk!
Head spinning yet? Come back, back to our horizon, back to our palm tree, back to what is important – living in the now. Surrender to the wisdom of the ancient mystics who told us that it is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enjoy a place of peace (heaven) while saddled with his stuff.
So many of us have lived our lives placing unmerited value on the opinions of others while discrediting our personal truth and reality. Breaking the shackles of people-pleasing requires honest self-appraisal, a healthy dose of self-esteem, and an enormous commitment to self-realization.
Much has been said concerning the verbal exchanges between Tucker Carlson and Senator Tammy Duckworth. Carlson’s rhetoric was inflammatory, the Senator’s response was appropriate, and we must believe that the Fox News host’s dialog was intentionally directed to a specific element of the American population.
In the remaining few minutes of his segment on Duckworth, he called her a “fraud” and “a callous hack.” Then he brought up Ilhan Omar, a favorite target, and said those who like the U.S. “have every right to fight to preserve our nation and our heritage and our culture” from “vandals like Tammy Duckworth and Ilhan Omar.”
What is the heritage and culture of which he is speaking and why is he labeling Tammy Duckworth and Ilhan Omar as “vandals?” Perhaps, to better understand we need to look at his audience. Are they racially diverse and indicative of the demographic changes happening in America? Are they part of America’s minorities who justifiably question the country’s commitment to freedom and equality for all?
Probably not. The Tucker Carlson audience wants to maintain the privilege and exclusionary practices of an America which has seen nearly 250 years of systemic covert and more recently overt racism and oppression of the minority population. And that is understandable – why should white America want to give up the privileges they have enjoyed for centuries?
But, that objective is not moral nor is it sustainable in a civil society. According to the demographic gurus, Caucasian America will be the minority by mid-century. Resistance to change and transformation is the sign of a decaying society. Protecting America from “vandals” like Tammy Duckworth and Ilhan Omar and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is akin to 1930s Germany protecting its population from the Jewish threat.
The threat does not come from the presence of minorities, religious creeds, nationalities, and varying lifestyle choices. It comes from those who fear change and transformation, those who are willing to demean and demonize others who do not fit into a narrow paradigm based on privilege and exclusion.
“What I’m talking about is more than recompense for past injustices—more than a handout, a payoff, hush money, or a reluctant bribe. What I’m talking about is a national reckoning that would lead to spiritual renewal. . . . Reparations would mean a revolution of American consciousness, a reconciling of our self-image as the great democratizer with the facts of our history.”
—Ta-Nehisi Coates, The Case for Reparations
Stunning words from Mr. Coates! Finally, white power and white privilege accustomed to the old, distinctly American adage “money talks” is challenged to the crux of what African-Americans want. They don’t want handouts, payoffs, hush money, or bribes. They want white America to do a conscience check and transform the inner soul that makes us racist and bigoted. What a challenge! Can we do it?