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  1. #1
    Senior Member Williamsmith's Avatar
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    Daily Bread

    I grew up in a very religious society which claimed to make sense out of non sense usually with an eye toward faith and not critical thinking. From the start, I chaffed at the thought of not having a definitive answer.

    My mother always had a little devotional booklet called "The Daily Bread" which one could read a short story daily with a religious connection to a positive approach to the day. I came to understand that it was her way of meditating and she was able to make sense of non sense usually while drinking a cup of coffee on the front porch or in winter in a nook by the piano in the dining room.

    My father has been dead many years. My mother is now 84 years young and a twice cancer survivor and a survivor of abuse......her little booklet served her well.

    These days, I most often go to the gym at 6:30 am and when I return I sit on the front porch or by my guitar in the sunroom and have a cup of coffee. I read. I contemplate. I meditate.

    This morning, I had two incongruous thoughts. I remembered catching fireflies as a child in Mason jars with lids that had holes poked in them. Their light seemed inexplicable and fascinating. I often kept the jar until morning and just as inexplicable and fascinating....their light was gone.
    Last edited by Williamsmith; 11-15-17 at 9:31am.

  2. #2
    Senior Member JaneV2.0's Avatar
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    That's a profound insight.
    A lot of people have their light extinguished by their associates and surroundings--too often permanently.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JaneV2.0 View Post
    That's a profound insight.
    A lot of people have their light extinguished by their associates and surroundings--too often permanently.
    I went back to the beginning of this thread to recall where we started and make sure I was on topic, although I really like reading everything. I noticed this.

    I want to ask my psychiatrist at my appointment tomorrow about this. My mom is so busy, always busy, she runs circles around me. I heard from my aunt that she wore her shoes out as a kid walking around the neighborhood, talking to people, doing things, etc. She has a hard time sitting still, although she is surviving her knee surgery. More recently she has lost track of some things, at 74, and there are a few other things with her energy levels. I often wonder if my bipolar II is similar but a trauma or 2 kicked into the needing treatment zone. I think my grandfather had some of the tendency and he drank it, while starting a LOT of different projects, business, etc. Hypomanic gets things done!

  4. #4
    Senior Member JaneV2.0's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zoe Girl View Post
    I went back to the beginning of this thread to recall where we started and make sure I was on topic, although I really like reading everything. I noticed this.

    I want to ask my psychiatrist at my appointment tomorrow about this. My mom is so busy, always busy, she runs circles around me. I heard from my aunt that she wore her shoes out as a kid walking around the neighborhood, talking to people, doing things, etc. She has a hard time sitting still, although she is surviving her knee surgery. More recently she has lost track of some things, at 74, and there are a few other things with her energy levels. I often wonder if my bipolar II is similar but a trauma or 2 kicked into the needing treatment zone. I think my grandfather had some of the tendency and he drank it, while starting a LOT of different projects, business, etc. Hypomanic gets things done!
    My great-grandmother died young in the Cuckoo's Nest (literally) around the turn of the century. Depression and bi-polar disease have left their mark on the family. Maybe some day I'll find out what the story was.

  5. #5
    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    You know that old saying "the pen is mightier than the sword." Well, the heart is mightier than the sword, too. Your dad had the sword, but your mom has the heart.
    "Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it--every, every minute?" Emily Webb, Our Town
    www.silententry.wordpress.com

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    williamsmith, I use Daily Bread now, I find it calming even as a non churched maybe even non Christian person, raised Presbyterian. I'm more fortunate than your mother, husband wise, and she is lucky to have you. I like Catherine's words that the heart is mightier than the sword.

  7. #7
    Senior Member razz's Avatar
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    Better the devil you know than one that you don't know is one explanation of why women who had limited resources opted to say in abusive situations.

    Another might be that she felt a limited sense of worth from childhood as girls/women were perceived as "less than" in many cultural situations.

    I have confidence in myself and my worth that are hard-fought.

    The school counsellor suggested teaching or nursing for me as a career, nothing else related to actual ability;
    I couldn't borrow any money from a bank without DH's signature despite the bank agreeing that I would be responsible for any debts that he incurred without my knowledge;
    I couldn't get an apprentice position for a dental lab technician as "I was too attractive and would be getting married, having children to raise and wasting the training" ( I worked for 37 years BTW);
    I was told that I couldn't get my tubes tied without DH's signature giving the surgeon permission in the 1970"s (DH and I had discussed as was our norm with everything and agreed on the decision. He went with me to the Ob/gyn prepared to fight for my right to choose but the ob/gyn husband and wife team had already chosen to over-ride that archaic patriarchal rule)
    and on and on.

    Your mother had even more barriers than I encountered, I am sure, and without a powerful support system from early childhood would not have had the confidence or the trust that her children would be safe if she left.

    May I suggest that you continue to give her the greatest gift and simply love the strength and courage she had to endure a tough life. Confirm her value as she is now. The past is gone under the bridge long ago.
    Gandhi: Happiness is when what you think, what you say and what you do are in harmony .

  8. #8
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    I grew up without a dad around so always found it fascinating to watch my in-laws relationship. She was a lifetime homemaker and waited on him hand and foot for their 65+ years of marriage. It stopped just short of cutting his meat for him. By appearances, it seemed like she was OK with it but I always wondered how she really felt. When he died a year ago, it almost seemed as if a weight had been lifted from her. As far as I know, he was not physically abusive but I have to wonder how he "trained" her to be so compliant.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Williamsmith's Avatar
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    As I said, I am a porch sitter. I came by this naturally. My mother is one and her father was one. Not surprisingly, I have an old black and white photo of my maternal great grand mother and father......sitting , where else ....on a porch. Today, it is hot, sunny and about 85 degrees. I sit half in the shade and half in the sun. The warmth of the sun makes my back feel better but clouds are creeping by and covering the sun off and on. A gentle breeze crosses my portico and makes it all the more pleasant.

    I get the feeling non porch sitters don't understand porch sitters. Every once in awhile a neighbor will walk by and say something like, "What ya up to?" To which I usually reply, "Nothin!" They walk away with a screwed up look on their face. My grandfather was good at porch sitting. He liked to watch the traffic pass by. Anyone from the neighborhood knew he most likely would be on the front porch in his Amish rocker with his cane at his side and they would honk their horn. That would prompt a half wave, cane in hand. Just high enough to be seen over the bannister but not too high as to wear oneself out over the course of an afternoon or evening.

    These same people who don't understand porch sitting, I think really view us as lazy. That kinda pisses me off. There is a lot of mental work being done and all at the expense of few calories. My grandfather never porch sat if there were things to be done. He was a bridge maker by trade and worked long hours. He always went to the porch right after dinner and then retired to the kitchen table for a beer or two before bed. When he retired, he worked in the garden all day and then relaxed on the porch. He definitely earned his seat on the porch.

    I regret that porch sitting is a lost art. Used to be porch sitters in my childhood neighborhood would take turns visiting other porch sitters who would always have extra chairs on their porch for hosting. It is not coincidence that beverages were always offered. Most people are more forthcoming with rumors and gossip after a couple adult drinks.

    I fought the urge to sit on the porch for awhile. But it's useless. If you have it in you, it's a gift that you ought not to ignore.

    I got pretty excited a couple weeks ago. The community installed a new speed bump in front of my place. I couldn't hardly stay in my seat.

  10. #10
    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    This is shocking news, williamsmith. I am so sorry for you and your friend.

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