Tuesday, November 26


I will try to remember the long distant past, with some of my Life's Free Treats from childhood.

A friend mentioned that she likes to see trees in towns, and it made me remember how much I loved the trees in the small township where I grew up.
The main street was a divided road, with an avenue of trees in the center. Provided wonderful shade in the heat of Summer, and the 'elders' of the district, who came to town to do business, would often be found sitting under the cool green shadows of those lovely trees.

It seems ridiculous, but I cannot remember the name or type of trees they were, but they were deciduous and so in the Winter's cold, they had shed their leaves and allowed the warm rays of winter sun to penetrate the avenue. I loved those trees, and the small town still has the old trees in the avenue from long ago. It is rather nice to visit and find the memory of those trees and that avenue are not false, and it is still the way I remember it all. So many memories disappoint on revisitation.

Makes me think that someone with care, and aesthetic appreciation must have designed that street.It is still the main street of the town, and passing traffic on the way to busy cities,  still travels that tree lined avenue. No doubt in the near future there will be a by-pass highway built, so that traffic does not have to slow down to travel that main street, of that somewhat sleepy town.

There were shops lining each side of that avenue, and there was a large Post Office, with wide concrete steps leading up into the interior. Sometimes people would sit on those steps and smoke a pipe or cigarettes. There was a wonderful bookshop that sold toys and novelties, and it also had a small lending library of books in the back of the shop. One of my best friends got a school holiday/Friday night job at that shop and she would ensure we got the best (adult) book choices to read! Skulduggery in country smalltown!

There was a large "Bargain Store" which sold everything from women's and men's clothing, shoes and slippers,  to linen and haberdashery.  Oh, and there was fabric!! It was my school holiday/Friday night employment and I loved that shop, and the lovely lady who managed it. A girl I had always been very wary of, was the other 'girl' and I got to be very fond of her also. Turned out she had been very wary of me, also! We had much fun, and I somehow loved arranging all the stock, and keeping things orderly. Even serving customers was alright, though I had been initially very nervous.

I remember the heated excitement of Christmas Eve, before I was a older, where there would be a Santa Parade down that street, and all we children of the district lined up on the footpaths, to watch the glitter and excitement of seeing Santa. Never mind that he often smelt distinctly 'beery'. Or the fact that his beard and wig were often slightly askew. It was very hot at Christmas time in our part of the world, so a bulky man in a hot, thick red suit, with beard and wig, were probably a big ask.

Of course the Santa sleigh was a large truck, with Santa seated on some type of chair on the back of the tray. From memory there were some elves? fairies? angels? little helpers, in the shape of teenage girls?  throwing lollies at the crowds. It was all very crowded and hot, and I suppose, given that weary parents had to try to settle feverishly excited little people off to sleep, it might have aided in tiring us out.

Of course as we got older, we felt we were far too sophisticated to join the Santa Parade. As teenagers we would parade that avenue, on Friday nights,  hoping to catch glimpses of our recent 'crush', and it was smalltown entertainment for us, and the place to see, and be seen. We would dress in our finest, and strut about the street, giggling, I suppose, though I was never much of a 'giggler' and eyeing off others to see what the latest trend was, or who was 'going' with who. It was a time of innocence, and harmless fun.

My days of part time employment ended, and I joined the full time work force, while I waited to begin my Nursing Career.
And therein lies another era for me.

Dean Martin, "That's  Amore" 
That is from my teenage years! So long ago. I am not even sure it was Dean Martin who sang the original.

Wednesday, November 13

Some days, time stands still...

Very depressed, and dark post follows. Please do not read further if you are distressed by raw emotions.

It seems so long since I have visited here, I feel I have forgotten how to even use the computer.
I have a new version of Windows now, and can't seem to master the photos, so there will be none added to this post.

When I figure out all the things I have forgotten, I may post something.

My son's journey through his battle with cancer, was so harrowing and terrible, it has left me permanently disabled, it seems. When he was first diagnosed with the rare, strange cancer, in his left foot, he made light of it, and even nicknamed his foot. We read up as much information as we could find, via the internet. He realised that his leg would be amputated, because the tumour was too large to be removed. He joked about having a tattoo on his leg, of dots, with a 'cut here' message attached.
The reality and the shock of the actual amputation was so hard, there was no laughter to be had, though he struggled valiantly to keep his head afloat. He tried to use his black humour to get him through that bleak and terrible time.
Not everyone seems to suffer such grief about amputation. My son suffered from so many problems regarding the manner of the amputation, and the inability to get pain control, and a decent fitting prosthesis, and an ignorant Dr telling him he may well never be able to have a prosthetic.

Just what a severely shocked, traumatized, sick, and grieving man needs to hear. Bastard.

There were the snide remarks about 'pity parties' on one hand, (only an arsehole would say such a thing, and some of them were female)  and 'how brave' he was on the other.
The truth was he was neither, and in the end, after the diagnosis of the cancer having metastisized to his lymph nodes, he knew he would not have long to live, and he could not be bothered to keep up a facade for people, so he withdrew, and did not want contact with the world.

He was very brave during the last weeks of his dying. He knew there was no treatment, but was advised that he could have radiotherapy, to slow the growth of the secondary tumours, which had become open, disgusting, and distressing wounds, and to help relieve some of the pain.

He finally died around a week after the radiotherapy. The staff could see him dying, a little each day.

His last week was an agonising battle with pain and distress, and grief. All the medications failed, all the pain relief failed. I wished it was me, who was so ravaged with pain, grief, and agony. If I could have traded my life for his, I would have gladly done so.

I have days when there seem to be possibilities,for some type of future,  but there are many, when I don't have any, and it all seems pointless and bleak. There are the moments when someone phones, who does not realize my son is dead, and that is so hard to take. Not their fault at all, and though I tried to notify everyone, of course, there are inevitably people who are missed.

I took myself and my daughter on a short cruise to try to get us both right away from our grief filled surroundings. It seemed initially, to work very well. We both enjoyed the trip, even though the weather left a little to be desired and at one stage we were in the snow! It was all so different from anything we had ever experienced, and there were no associated memories of either Gom, or my son.

We both returned refreshed, and for the first two days, I felt as though some of my energy had returned. As is common with grief, something came along to take me right back to the beginning, and I cowered in my bed, unable to face the world.

I live a hollow facade of a life, in many respects. No one wants to really know how you feel. No one needs to know.

I am almost too afraid to voice my innermost feelings. I rarely do.  No one wants to hear the truth.

There are so many overwhelming hurdles to be crossed. I have no stamina. My inclination to live has gone, but my heart still beats, and my lungs still fill with air, involuntarily. I long for rest.

Sorry for the bleakness.