SHINE ON

burning candle

Jesus said, “You are the light of the world. A city built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead, they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” (Matthew 5:14-16)

I was given a card with this quote on it this morning and it had a strong impact on me. It made me think about light and about how one candle can spread light to another and what effect that can have.

We can all spread a little light – we don’t necessarily have to be believers of faith to do so. The above verse inspired me so much that I decided to go out and spread a little light myself.

As usual, when I came from town, I said my usual ‘good morning’ to strangers passing by and smiled a genuine smile at the faces coming toward me on the path. Some people smiled back or nodded. Others didn’t but that’s ok too. Of course, that’s lovely if they do, that’s a bonus, but the important thing for me was to give out the light that was given to me this morning.

I don’t have a lot of money to spare (If there was some to be had, I could help so many). However, in the absence of gold coins, I decided that I could still give … giving could come in the shape of a kind word; a good deed; a gentle touch on the arm to a troubled man or woman; a tissue to wipe away his or her tears; a chat to a lonely soul … and so much more.

I stopped in the street and spent some time in conversation with an elderly man who was playing accordion in the street. He was playing his heart out but we could just hear one another above the music he was so obviously familiar with.

Then, I passed a tired-looking guy on the street who was obviously homeless. He had a hat in front of him, collecting money. All I could offer was to spend a little time talking to him. He turned out to be a fascinating man – he’d been a driver of a London bus for nearly twenty years. He had some tales to tell that beat any comic-strip you could find in a newspaper!

Just as I was walking toward the bridge, I saw a rough-looking, young man offering hand-made bracelets made from cotton thread. He was sitting making them as people walked by. Some folk stopped and looked; some glanced across at the placard propped up next to him. It read ‘I am no longer homeless. A local man gave me a room in his house but I have nothing to put in it.’ I stood for a few minutes and watched him crafting them and decided to make a small donation in exchange for a beautiful blue and lilac bracelet. He said thank you and I smiled at him and said thank you too.

I decided it was time I started heading home but just had to call in at Tesco’s for some milk. In front of me were bunches of fresh flowers in buckets which were too expensive for me but made me smile, just the same. I headed toward the milk aisle and just happened to come across the ‘bracelet man.’ He had a bottle of cider in his hand and was just picking up a second. I went up to him. We spoke. He looked surprised. I think he expected me to have a go at him for taking money off passers-by and then buying alcohol with it but I’d said, “nice to see you again; hope you have a good rest of the day.”

Why? Because I knew that, I was no-one to judge. I only said, “I understand. I’ve been there – done that – and worn the t-shirt.” I had been in a similar place myself, many years ago. I had my reasons as this man may have also. We should never judge someone until we have walked a mile in their shoes. Whoever you are, wherever you have been, whatever you’ve been through, it’s still possible to spread a little light (and a little love) – you never know where it might travel and who it might touch.

FALLING IN LOVE

first date words (George)

 

You know that feeling when you first meet someone and you’re not sure how you feel about them, but you meet up with them a second time to try to get to know them a little better? And then, the second time, you think you like them but you’re not entirely convinced yet. So, you arrange to go out again, for coffee this time and decide to try to make your mind up. You don’t want to keep messing them about. You need to make a decision as to whether you would like to get together and spend more time with each other or go your separate ways.

One week later – Decision made. Everybody says how good we look together and how well-suited we are. We’re both happy although I have to say, I am vaguely aware that it’s early days yet and there’s bound to be hiccups in any new relationship.

A week later, I’m completely convinced that I’ve done the right thing, and love is now, well and truly in the air, as they say. We have a date tonight – we’re going to the city’s main theatre to see an excellent and very gifted female comedian, live on stage. I’m so looking forward to it – I must remember to put the tickets in my purse before we leave and before I forget. We’re right in the front row so should get an excellent view.

The show was great, I had a good laugh but also learned a lot of things I didn’t know too. It finished quite late, at least late for me as someone who goes to bed early and is up as a lark in the mornings; well maybe not a lark, more like an antelope that’s been on the gin!

It’s time for bed now so I ‘elegantly’ glide up the stairs with Brian, my stairlift (so named after Brian, the slow snail in the old children’s programme ‘The Magic Roundabout’. All things considered, Brian behaves reasonably well contrary to some of the ‘funny business’ that was going on behind the scenes at that programme for those of you who might remember it!) I clean my teeth and at last, I fall happily into bed.

So, where is my partner? Oh, did I forget to mention that my new partner’s name is George and he is happily and peacefully downstairs snoozing downstairs in the hallway, and is getting his energy back, ready for tomorrow? Yes, you’ve got it … George is my new wheelchair (he’s plugged in and charging up). And yes, I know I introduced Prince George to you previously but now his shiny crown has fallen off and I’ve got to know the real George underneath, I like him much better and we’ve truly fallen in love now. Well, they say ‘beauty is in the eye of the beholder’.

SHATTERED

shattered woman face

They say it never rains but it pours! The last few months has been one long succession of dramatic events, unfortunate happenings, life problems, family dramas and … need I go on?

Things are particularly bad right now which may explain the absence of posts again on my part and the same goes for reading all of your blogs. What can I do but apologize once more?

Right now, my Mum is in the main City Hospital, Trauma Unit after an accident. She has fractured her spine in two places and fractured her skull along with her nose. She also has kidney damage. Basically, she is truly shattered. She is on oxygen to help her breathe and is fairly out of it most of the time because of the powerful painkilling medicines she is receiving. She is in a neck brace because she has fractured a bone at the base of her skull too.

I am obviously extremely worried and upset, as you can imagine. I’m fifty miles away from Mum with no car to get there. I managed to get down there on Thursday with George (my new wheelchair) but it was a very difficult journey – three trains and two buses each way for me to get to the hospital on my own.

I found her fast asleep when I went in, partly because of the strong painkillers and partly exhaustion. After an hour, I woke her very gently and told I was there She couldn’t speak much but I know she knew that I was there.

She’s hardly able to eat and is not drinking much either. Fortunately, she is on a drip and is lying flat on her back with nothing to look at but a blank ceiling most of the time. That’s make her feel quite depressed (hardly surprising  under the circumstances).

Basically, my Mum is shattered! And as you can imagine, I am shattered, emotionally too. It’s awful to see my Mum in so much pain and with such severe injuries. I am thinking about her day and night and only wish that I could take her place so she didn’t have to suffer so much. I would in an instant. Mum is eighty-six and is physically, mentally and emotionally, a broken woman. My heart is breaking knowing that she is going through so much.

PRINCE GEORGE (THE CASE AGAINST)

Well, sadly, that’s the end of Charlie, my wheelchair. He has finally given up the ghost and gone to that great big wheelchair heaven in the sky. I’ve been without Charlie for nearly a month now and have been cooped up indoors, slowly climbing the walls and developing a serious bout of cabin fever. Oh, it’s so sad and so hard to let him go after four long and faithful years.

Farewell, Charlie x

Charllie front

 

Introducing ‘Prince George’

I have now had to acquire a new wheelchair, although due to a serious lack of funds, he is somewhat, or should I say, considerably, inferior to Charlie. So, let me introduce ‘Prince George’, ordinarily known as George (and will possibly become Georgie if he behaves himself and endears himself to me a little more).

George 1

Today was my first full day of driving him and, oh boy, am I feeling it now?! Ouch! Prince George has so far shown himself to be very inconsiderate despite the deceiving ‘go faster stripes’ on either side of his back and his smart blue paintwork. I have noted the following points of comparison in the case against Prince George:

  • His back is tough vinyl whereas Charlie was comfortably upholstered.
  • George has four wheels, much more difficult to drive than Charlie’s well-balanced six wheels.
  • Parking is a nightmare … Charlie could do a nifty three-point turn. George just about manages it in fifteen points, (give or take a few).
  • Charlie had a neat, flip-up footplate whereas George has two very stiff footrests (I think he’s developed arthritis at an early age) .
  • George feels every bump in the pavement and he feels like he’s climbing the humps on a Bactrian camel’s back.
  • The armrests are plastic, as hard as cement which is tough on the elbows, as opposed to Charlie’s softly-cushioned arms.
  • I came home today totally exhausted and with my back feeling like I’d run a marathon in stiletto heels.

However, I do have to say in defence of George:

  • He has fitted LED headlights and rear lights for coming home on those chilly and dark winter nights when a starless sky is as black as coal.
  • He even has left and right indicators although because the controls are completely different, I indicated to turn left when I was trying to turn the speed down and I ended up having a close encounter with a brick wall which had very conveniently placed itself in my way.
  • George even has hazard warning lights – very useful in my case as the sheer effort of trying to keep him straight on a narrow footpath/cycleway renders him a hazard to anyone within a ten-metre radius.
  • George’s ‘beep’ is a tad louder than Charlie’s which means, “excuse me, please remove yourself from the vicinity if I am coming towards you”. Alternately, if I’m really exhausted and ratty, this may come across as, “get out of the way you silly idiot” (or for silly idiot, read “%$#@/&*£*”)!

So there you have it; the case of Prince George versus Charlie, with Charlie winning outright. However, unfortunately, I’m stuck with arthritic George so I’ll just have to persevere and leave the stilettos at home in future.

RIP Charlie

A TALE OF A WOUNDED SOUL (The Catcher In The Rye)

dreamcatcher - secrets

 Finest gossamer kisses

Like sheer and aged lace

Guarded secrets, hidden

Daring not to show their face

~~~

Shattering the human psyche

Destroying inner souls

Lying buried deep in hearts

Digging deeper holes

~~~

A tangled knot of words

Come drifting on the wind

A featherweight of tales

Against fair airbrushed skin

~~~

Perhaps the nightmare follows

I ask “well, who am I?”

The dreams, they closely follow

The catcher in the rye.

COME RAIN, COME SHINE

rainy city gif

Well, for today, at least, I’ve turned up like the proverbial bad penny. I’ve missed a lot, I know, in the time I’ve been away – humble apologies for my lack of attention to all your blogs, my friends. I will try and catch up at some point if I can.

They say ‘it never rains, but it pours’ and it certainly has been tipping it down here in my neck of the woods. Today is the first day that I’ve been able to write anything for nearly a month, and I’ve almost forgotten what WordPress Land and my blog look like!

I am a jumble of emotions right now – quite a few negative ones, unfortunately, but a  few positives thrown in amongst them to break up the monotony.

  • My Mum has been in and out of the hospital for the last few weeks. She has now been diagnosed with an extremely rare syndrome that only affects one person in a million. We are trying to come to terms with it. She is now home with Care (which, being a very independent lady of 85, she is not happy about). Nevertheless, at least, I know she’s safe which is a good thing.
  • A not so good thing is that I am receiving nasty, blackmailing emails (again) from a member of my family. How lovely! I am dealing with that one with some difficulty but a lot of grit.
  • I’ve got major problems with Charlie (my wheelchair). He had two new batteries last week at a cost of nearly £300 (needless to say, that’s bumped up the balance due on my credit card), and now he needs a new motor which is going to add another £300 to my debt.
  • One of my favourite Carers is leaving which always unsettles me as I have to build up a trusting relationship with someone who is working that closely with me.
  • My son, Tom, is going back to court to fight for custody of my two grandchildren who are only three and one. Their mother is not taking care of them properly and Social Services, in their wisdom, are turning a very convenient blind eye to the situation.

So, now let me throw a few positives into the mix!

Now, perhaps the world is looking a little more like this.

rain on glass

  • My niece. Gemma (who is 23 which makes me feel quite ancient) has flown on her own (with the help of an aeroplane, naturally) halfway round the world to visit our family for the first time.
  • It gets even better now; my sister is also flying from the other side of the planet to visit me on 1st June. It’s going to be wonderful to see her and give her a real, warm and genuine hug as opposed to those non-touchy-feely cyber hugs that I usually have to send.
  • It’s Easter weekend and although I cannot get to church to celebrate (thanks to Charlie),  I can, at least, soak up the atmosphere of ‘Songs of Praise’ on my laptop and even join in with the singing if the mood so takes me.
  • My neighbour has just come back from holiday and I said I’d keep any eye on the house. As I cannot actually see her house from where I’m sat, it’s more like keeping an ear on her house as we are semi-detached and not a lot escapes my radar. She popped in on her return and has brought me a beautiful, neat bunch of daffodills which are my favourite spring flowers.
  • Good news too in that I have found a children’s ‘soft play area’, not far from where I live which means my son might be able to bring my two little ones to see me without the worry that they are in reach of all my medical equipment, sockets and general disability paraphernalia.

So, finally, perhaps the world is beginning to look a little like this again … x

small vase of daffodills

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

Just to let you know that I have some very serious life and family issues happening/happened so I apologise for the lack of posts recently and lack of comments on all your wonderful blogs. Please bear with me. I’ll be back very soon, I hope. Thank you for your understanding, my friends, Ellie xxx😥

silent because