Along Comes a Dragon

“It does not do to leave a live dragon out of your calculations, if you live near one.” –

J.R.R. Tolkien

It all began with the A to Z Challenge last month. Or actually a few days before it began. I’m a planner and somehow April snuck up on me. I was chagrined to realize the month was just days away when I’m the first to make snarky remarks when people are surprised when holidays just appear out of nowhere- you know- like Thanksgiving or Christmas or Easter…As far back as I can remember April has always followed March.

After scrambling and filling up more lists of possible posts for three different topics than I could ever use, I ended up choosing my Winnie the Pooh quotes. I put in the work, found the quotes, took the photos, made the notes, and wrote some of the posts. Knowing I had a major family event coming up in May, I felt confident that I could handle the A to Z challenge.

Enter the dragon.

It took many forms and although I might have predicted every single roadblock I encountered two weeks into the challenge, and being the overthinker over worrier that I am I could have formulated plans a, b and c….. what I could not anticipate was that my anxiety was not only going to rear its ugly little head, it was going to full-on take over. The prepared posts, or at least the notes, the grandson struggle, the parent struggle, the grown-up kids’ struggle, the event chaos, and the sick pup- it wasn’t just one of those things that did me in. It was all of them.

At times I was able to take a step back and look at each one individually. I could study it and determine if it was a “me” thing or a “them” thing. I was able to place it on a shelf and walk away. But those “me” things were a much bigger dragon to deal with. And when the “them” things snuck in as smaller slightly troublesome dragons, I couldn’t always swat them away. These are my people! I’m not able to sit back and do nothing when someone I love is having a difficult time.

I had to drop A to Z. There were bigger dragons to slay. And with time (which was only two or three weeks but felt like so much longer), most of those dragons figured themselves out. All except the pup.

Our sweet Ari has been dealing with medical issues for a few years now and as she gets older they are growing in number and difficult to treat. We have yet another vet visit coming up this week to see what’s next. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that this visit will be simple in nature, not yet another ailment to add to the growing list.

Unfortunately, this dragon was there and we knew it. There is little we can do but live through it.

I’ve actually never read any Tolkien but boy does that quote speak to me!

I hope all is well in your corner of the world!


N is for Nothing #AtoZChallenge

“What I like doing best is Nothing.”

“How do you do Nothing,” asked Pooh after he had wondered for a long time.

“Well, it’s when people call out at you just as you’re going off to do it, ‘What are you going to do, Christopher Robin?’ and you say, ‘Oh, Nothing,’ and then you go and do it. It means just going along, listening to all the things you can’t hear, and not bothering.”

“Oh!” said Pooh.“

-a.a. milne

I love those “nothing” times. Recently my sister and I were just wandering around, doing nothing. We ended up peeking into the windows of an empty house that was for sale. It was at dusk and the lighting was questionable enough that we were half convinced that we would find someone peering out the window at us!

We unknowingly picked the busiest time of the weekend to explore a popular local venue. We proceeded to crash no less than three different weddings, hitting one of them twice in our failed attempts to get out of the area. I’m still convinced we appear in photos of all the weddings- these two middle-aged women (wait-what? maybe I should just say women of undetermined age) wearing masks (face masks for safety- not Halloween or superhero masks) in casual dress meandering in the background of every photo.

When the sun had fully set, we found out just how dark night can be on a street with no lights. Being avid readers of thrillers, we joked about how we were prime pickings for a serial killer on our way back home.

This was a different nothing than my post previously about nothing when I am busy all the time with nothing to show for it. Both nothings are so important. Everything can’t be about something. Sometimes it just has to be what it is.

A to Z Challenge- N

Are you ready for the weekend? I sure am!


K is for Kind #AtoZChallenge

“Just because an animal is large, it doesn’t mean he doesn’t want kindness; however big Tigger seems to be, remember that he wants as much kindness as Roo.” 

winnie the pooh/ a.a. milne

There’s nothing that fills my heart to the brim more than witnessing my grandson’s many acts of kindness. He inherited it from his dad, who is one of the most generous and giving people I know. Beej is seven years old and he’s teetering on the brink of being an almost big kid. He’s not a little kid but he’s still young. And that puts him dangerously close to the age when a kid can get snotty at times. They tend to lose that young innocence that’s so sweet. So far, Beej is as giving and kind as he has ever been.

He often shares his dessert with me or my husband. It’s interesting to see who is the grandparent of favor on any given day. (Most of the time it’s me. Not bragging. It’s just the way it is.) One day after breaking his cookie in half and giving me my share, he took a bite out of his half. My husband jokingly asked where his piece was. Beej split the remainder of his cookie in half and handed it to my husband, who began to protest. I shushed him because I knew that Beej’s gesture was sincere. Having solved that problem and ensuring his grandpa wasn’t feeling left out, he took another bite of his much smaller cookie. The piece that remained was squished between his thumb and a finger when Uncle Andy arrived home from work. Andy was unaware of anything that was going on. Beej looked at the slightly large crumble of cookie that he had left and with an almost imperceptible sigh, attempted to break it into two pieces. He set it on a napkin and placed it at his uncle’s place at the table. As Andy entered the room, Beej said, “I left you something by your plate.”

I added, “On the napkin,” sure that he would probably brush it off thinking it was a crumb. And to be fair, it was a crumb.

Andy thanked Beej for sharing his dessert, the side of his mouth twitching to hide a smile. Beej solemnly said he was welcome and asked if he was going to eat it now. He watched as his uncle ate the crumb, then asked if he liked it. Andy solemnly nodded and said he did.

He’s such a kind child. When we went to the library recently, he stepped forward to make the automatic doors open, then held out his hand motioning for me to proceed and said, “Ladies first.” My heart melted.

This is our Beej. So much like Pooh- being aware that even uncles that look and act like very large kids but are supposedly adults like dessert.

A to Z Challenge- K

Trying to catch up!!


J is for Journey #AtoZChallenge

Life is a journey to be experienced, not a problem to be solved.”

winnie the pooh/ a.a. milne

And herein lies the problem itself. There will be times when we encounter problems that need to be solved as we trek along our journey. But every step doesn’t need to be a problem. And it doesn’t need to be solved.

I’m still learning to live with this idea. Looking back I realize that I spent too much time fussing and worrying about something that should have just been left as it is and experienced. I’m in the middle of what can only be described as a maelstrom but if I force myself to step back and look at it, I can see that I just have to live it- not solve it.

I have a friend who will text me and ask what’s been going on in my life. When I tell her that my life is pretty boring, with nothing much to report, she never believes me. But it’s true. Ask me what’s happening in my kids’ lives? I’ve got lots to tell. But my own personal life? Well, if you read yesterday’s post you know that I huddled under a blanket with Beej looking at a projection on the “ceiling” of our hideout while listening to a story. That was it. Oh yes, and I had a meltdown over things I cannot control. That was fun- NOT- and totally unproductive.

I’m working on a few things- like stepping back to evaluate where my head is and what is bugging me. I’m pushing myself to write. I want to write. I know I want to write. I have words running through my head all the time and let me tell you, up there– I’ve written some really good stuff! Haha. I’m going to focus on the people and things that make me happy. I’m going to create. Whether it’s words, music, or art (and I use the word loosely), that’s when I’m most at peace. I’m going to do more enjoying and less worrying.

In other words- I’m going to experience my life. Thanks for the words of wisdom, Pooh!

A to Z Challenge- J

Peace and love,