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1,2,3,4 long days without my computer….

Muriel2017

My

In spite of my admiration for Catherine the Great and Empress

knight in shining armor

My knight in shining armor

Wu, right now my friend/neighbor Wayne is my new hero. My computer collapsed. Poor thing had to be hospitalized and have surgery. Wayne carried it gently down to his car and drove it to the Apple hospital, where they deemed it too old to bother with. (Apple must be hard up for cash and needs us to purchase new ones. Make a donation if you can.)

better sick comp

My ailing old computer

Undaunted, gallant Wayne found somewhere else to take my ailing computer, drove it there and after a few harrowing days, brought it back to me. I was more than willing to shell out the $392 required for a new video processor chip, whatever that is.

Meanwhile, I had fretted and lost sleep over the possibility of losing everything on it. Worrying, as you know, is something I excel in. However, I also learned how much time I spend on this electronic contraption. I now must admit I’m addicted and I missed it terribly.

red brook and duster

Without my computer I had no excuses

This monster takes up so much of my time, there are dozens of obvious tasks-to-do I pass by each day and think I must take care of ‘one of these days’. Well, these four days ended up being those days. I couldn’t produce any other delaying tactics not to do them.

Instead of checking my email and seeing how many visited my blog first thing in the day, I made my often neglected bed every morning. Then, although I attend Tai Chi every Monday, plus exercise classes on Wednesdays and Fridays, I managed — in addition to get on my Exercycle Ladyonbikeand Stepper three times during the four days without electronic distractions. (The last time I’d managed time for that was March 8th!) I also managed to daily do the physio-recommended arm exercises for my torn tendons.

Woman_Sitting_at_a_Messy_Desk_clipart_image

My desk is now neater…

I have oodles of paper left over from my old printer which require detaching before I can use them in my new one. I now have a respectable stack ready and prepared. My desk is also somewhat neater. I filed many papers which had sat there for months. Papers and documents awaiting shredding got shredded and properly recycled. At last, my 2016 phone book/calendar got disposed of, with all your names and phone numbers safely shredded as well. Long neglected, shocked loved ones and friends received phone calls out of the blue. I feel so noble!

My kitchen received attention as well. I neatened up my ‘plastic bag’ drawer, piling various bags high on my counter, after which I diligently separated them by size. I carefully weighed the separated stacks down in the drawer with paperweights. (I did this in spite of son Rafi’s warning that this madness would indicate to visitors that I’m neat, thus making them uncomfortable in my home.) After that, I attacked my wealth of plastic containers, matching tops and bottoms, and discarding all those I couldn’t fix up with anyone. Then, because I;d rather not go out when it snows, I’d accumulated extra ‘just in case’ food supplies during winter, I pulled everything down from those crowded cabinets and put things in order. Can you imagine?

drawing blacl:white w:broom

I cleaned up the winter debris

Nor did my balcony get overlooked in this frenzy. On a rain-less day, I got out there and cleared up the debris left over from winter. My outdoor pots are now ‘almost’ pristine and ready for spring planting. You’ve got to be impressed!

Well, now I have my computer back and this ain’t gonna happen again for (hopefully) a very long time. I’m back. Thank goodness for small favors! I was even driving myself crazy…..

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Joys of new motherhood

Mom, look I'm telling you 2

photo by Susan Kauffmann

Today women are talking openly on CBC radio about feeling overwhelmed and exhausted as new moms. They’re also speaking of isolation and boredom. We didn’t dare say so when I was young, but it was real for me. They’re now suggesting an app to help moms find others in the same boat living nearby. Maybe, but that wouldn’t have helped me.

When I became a mom, I’d been working at an interesting, challenging job. We were ‘expected’ to leave when pregnant. I did. What a shock awaited me — no one told me how tough it was to be a mom, or how much I’d miss adult conversation.

If baby slept, I was afraid she was dead, if she cried, I knew there was something terribly wrong. I fed, changed, checked and bathed her, and washed diapers. (Disposable diapers didn’t exist) I was exhausted, but the worst of it was — babies aren’t great conversationalists.

My husband suggested I attend a ‘Coffee Klatch’ some of the young mothers in our circle attended. I was desperate. I tried and failed miserably. In those days doctors didn’t encourage breastfeeding, so I diligently packed bottles of formula, diapers, bibs, extra baby clothing, and goodness knows what else — 15 pounds of stuff, 10 pounds of baby. I lugged baby in her carrier and everything else out to my car and off we went. (My children would have a heart attack at the lack of safety available at the time for transporting infants in cars.)

None of us were homeowners. Apartment buildings in L.A. often came with buzzers outside, where your mail was left. Seeing some right there, after buzzing, I carried it in.

“Oh, no!’ our friend cried ‘Jeffrey doesn’t like me to pick up the mail.’

Jeffrey was one of those brilliant men who marry simple women. (That’s interesting in itself.) He didn’t like her to pick up the mail?? He didn’t TRUST her to pick up the mail. She ran outside to replace it immediately. (I could never forget that?)

 

group moms:babies

Looking for a giant headache?

Looking for a giant headache? Try four mothers having coffee

crying baby

If mine was quiet, another screamed

accompanied by four infants. Migraine guaranteed. When my hellion on wheels was quiet, another screamed and/or required attention. When mine wailed and set off a storm of crying, I felt guilty. It’s not rational, but when have I ever been rational?

Following the conversation over the constant noise was beyond me. I missed much which was no great loss. What did they talk about? The best way to wash diapers and how to make spaghetti sauce (the use of the word ‘pasta’ came later). Surprise, surprise. It was the last ‘coffee klatch’ I attended.

I couldn’t take a class because we couldn’t afford a babysitter. What to do? I needed something or I’d go mad. I called the accountant who worked for my former boss, asked if he’d help me find a part-time job. He did. It wasn’t the most delightful of environments, being a locked facility for people with dementia, but I dressed like a real person and went to work two days a week and earned enough for the baby-sitter.

A plus: I learned patience and understanding. I even smiled and thanked the resident who carefully placed her urine sample next to my sandwich on my lunch tray. She was part of what saved MY sanity.

Have you seen my scarf?

She helped save my sanity

We are all different and have different needs. If meeting with other young moms and babies is for you, more power to you. However, be aware it doesn’t make you a terrible mother if you find, as I did, you need time away from your little one.

Who, me worry?

Mom, look I'm telling you 2My friend Sandy once said and I quote: ‘Worry is interest paid on a debt you may not owe.’ I’ve repeated it so often to others and myself that I know it by heart. I worried about using it without acknowledging the clever soul who first came up with it, so I searched my ‘Oxford Dictionary of Quotations’ to find out — without success. I still worried about being sued, so I Googled it. They say Mark Twain said something like it. Mark Twain said lots of stuff worth quoting, so maybe that’s true. He’s dead. He probably won’t sue me. Whew!

Worry is on my mind right now because I’m worried about how hot and dry it has been. I live in a rain forest where it hasn’t rained for far too long. Outside the city, our forests are so dry, fires rage unabated. Our air is so unhealthy, they’ve warned the elderly and those with breathing disorders  to avoid going out. I’m worried. Am I considered elderly? I’m also worried that this is the future.

Besides, where I live the weather used to be considered temperate and many local eating spots are not air-conditioned. It wasn’t necessary. Does this new climate mean I will be limited to only restaurants that are artificially cooled? I don’t do heat well. I’m worried I’ll get bored with the few cafes I KNOW are air-conditioned. I’m also worried about getting cranky and mean because of the heat, which I so don’t like. I’d hate that to happen, but it may — and friends kind enough to put up with me now will all walk away. What splendid worry opportunities, it all terrifies me!

I've lost countless hours of sleep through the years worrying

I’ve lost countless hours of sleep through the years worrying

Worrying is something I’ve always been terrific at. If they had Worry Academy Awards, I’d win for sure, hands down. It’s something I’ve always excelled in. I could list hundreds of worries here

If they gave Academy Awards for worrying, I'd win, hands down

If they gave Academy Awards for worrying, I’d win, hands down

which I’ve lost sleep over through the years, but I’m worried you’d fall asleep before you finished reading all of them.

Maybe this ‘skill’ should be put to use. Perhaps my worrying can help others. Who knows, a new career path may open for me in which I can utilize my excellent worrying abilities. Should I worry about the taxes I’d have to pay on all the business I’d get since I’m such a heroic, wonderful worrier? No matter, since like all big businesses, you, dear reader, are important to me, I’ll take the plunge and worry about it later.

Do take advantage of my remarkable ability to anguish. Give me your worries and worry no more. I’ll do your worrying for you — for a fee of course. Whatever the subject, I can worry about it better than you.

Worried about the Stock Market? Worry no more.

Worried about the Stock Market? Worry no more.

Take your pick: Politics? Family? Stock Market? Jobs? Money? Taxes? Love life? Health? The Greek financial crisis? Aliens? Your car? Kids? Global warming? Environment? Dementia?

Whatever your worry, I’m worrying about it already anyway and have years of experience doing so, so you needn’t bother. I’ll do it for you. Maybe with all the money I’ll earn, I can stop worrying about my children’s lack of any possible inheritance.

The best part is that when I worry for you, you yourself can concentrate on finding clever solutions to all your worries. It’s a win-win situation. Satisfaction guaranteed!