Picking Up Pieces

Once again I am reminded of the Scarecrow in the Wizard of Oz, when he says: “They tore off my arms and threw them over there…they tore off my legs and threw them over there…and ripped out my chest and threw it over there.” I laugh, because I have often felt that way in my life, and now here I am again.

Here’s what happened: Two months ago (I’m flabbergasted it’s been that long), my husband suffered an attack of arthritis. I didn’t even know that arthritis could come in such an attack. We kept thinking it would pass. It really seemed to be, but it didn’t. And somehow over these weeks I lost myself in the 24/7 details of nursing and attempting to do all the things around the house he would do.

“This, too, shall pass,” is the wisdom, and this evening, 10 days the far side of my husband’s surgery, I found that I am getting a bit of breathing room and the urge to pick up the pieces of my life. I’m starkly aware, and grateful, for the gift that is my life–my own dreams and hopes and plans. We have to fight to keep these alive. It is our duty to fight the urge that says in weariness, “Oh, what’s the use.”

I’m grateful, too, for the hard days, because it is true, they have always shaped me, strengthened me, far more than the easy times. Once more I am pared down. Things that had appeared so darned important seem not to matter at all. I have a clearer sense of what is truly important to me, such as my chickens and that I must absolutely write fiction again.

Once more, like a thousand times before, I pick up the pieces to begin again.

15 thoughts on “Picking Up Pieces

  1. I had to laugh when I read your post. We have had far too much death in our immediate family, with the last one occurring last Saturday.

    I, too, value my chickens and this is my first time with raising them. Money is tight, but Audrey Hepburn (chicken who looks like her) became very sick yesterday. My man said “enough death, she is going to the vet”. This is, to say the least, a shocker! I found a vet and taking her in ( in the cat carrier, no less) today at 5. I cannot tell you how empowering this is feeling to our family. Even if she doesnt make it, somehow we will cope better, knowing we did our best. You have been my inspiration on my chicken adventure.
    You and your hubby, as well as your chicken family, are in my prayers.
    I just wanted you to know that your words mattered to a woman in Northern California, and the kindness you write with your fiction comes through loud and clear in your blog. You are deeply appreciated.
    Sending you a great big hug!


    • Oh, Miss Becky, thank you for telling your story. What an inspiration You are! How is Audrey Hepburn? I pray she is healing. I get it completely. One time, years ago, a friend had a sick parakeet. They had to seek and seek to find a vet, but they did, and the poor little thing had pneumonia. Can you imagine? They had to raise the temp, keep it over heat and put drops in it’s water, for the longest time. But they did it, and it survived. My heart goes out to you with your losses. Do let us know how Miss Audrey is.


  2. You are never far from my thoughts and prayers. We may not understand all the messages from our creator all the time, but definitely he has a way of reminding us to re prioritize what is important. Best wishes to you and your family, my dear friend.


    • Dear Ionia, thank you for your boosting words. Your presence on the web is a blessing to all. I find it is only through tough, chaotic times that I grow, and this one is no difference. Was thinking of you and your many coffee mugs this morning when I opened my cabinet. More will have to go, and I’m ready.


  3. Oh Dear, I am sad for you and all that has been happening in your part of the world. It does seem that when it rains it pours doesn’t it. Your comparison to the scarecrow is proof that you have not completely lost yourself in the midst of everything else! So glad to see you back with your words! Give hubby a hello, and tell him to take care. This is just a reminder that we are not as young as we used to be. God Bless you and yours,


    • Carolyn, thank you for your insight. I guess in that I was able to articulate my feelings, I did have touch with me after all. Didn’t realize until you pointed it out. Jim is recovering slowly, but you are right, a real wake up call that we’ve moved into another space on our journey. Some things will have to change. God is my guide, and all is well.


  4. Glad your husband is on the mend. I hope that you had some help during this stressful time, as you are the one who is helping when others need to be helped. Love you as always, Joyce


  5. In my experience, taking care of a post-surgical spouse is somewhat like dealing with a cranky toddler. Sometimes late in the evening, I would tuck him into the truck and drive around until he got sleepy, lol. I pray for a speedy recovery for your husband and rest for you.


    • Oh, Lordy, what a great idea, Nell Jean! As soon as he can stand to be back in the car, will do. Up to this point he sits over there and with every tiny bump, he lets out an “Oh!” It’s pretty unnerving.


  6. So true. I’ve gone through the roughest days of my life recently but, as I pick up my own pieces, I am finding tremendous blessing in the restoration and healing process…in the battle to be better and to hold on to my dreams for the future!


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