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Showing posts from April, 2013

Living What Is Instead of What Should Be

Morning! Well actually I guess it is after noon so good afternoon...

I want to carry on with the theme from yesterday a bit where I was trying to spend my day moment by moment --living in the now.  I came across this great quote written on Glennon Doyle Melton's Facebook page which I found through reading another awesome blog I want to talk about tomorrow(you can find Glennon's blog here and I invite you to go exploring!) 

"When we live in a picture of what should be, instead of what is, we add a layer of guilt on top of what is already very difficult.  And that makes it almost impossible.  It's extremely counter cultural to admit that life is not perfect.  I think that people are desperate to admit together that life is messy, and that marriage is hard, and that parenting is excruciating sometimes.  And that doesn't mean that you're doing something wrong.  It's hard because it is supposed to be".

I should have this on a t-shirt I think, or someone s…

It's All About the Here and Now

Today is a good day.  
I have positioned my laptop on the dining room table in a way so that I can see the bird feeders.  Even through the closed doors I can hear the unique warble of the yellow finches that have recently begun to frequent my yard.  
This morning, cardinals-- the male brilliant in his scarlet coat and black mask -- returned, and as I watched, the male flew back and forth from the sunflower seeds to feed his mate.   
Watching the birds gives me great joy and so I am trying to take the time to do this each day.  Were it not for this blog and how it makes me sit down and think, I can't say I would sit still long enough to do this. Taking time for myself is still a foreign concept.

It is ironic that I have tried to attract birds to our pet free, quiet yard for years and the first year we have two dogs (one a squirrel/bird chasing terrier who launches herself off our deck or up the brick walls of our house to get at anything in our yard) we finally have a diverse little c…

Under Construction......Me

After the soil was removed from one side of the Tower's foundation, it was sturdy enough to support the seven bells--the weight could now be managed  comfortably.  
The support lines were carefully removed, townspeople could safely return to their homes in the Tower's shadow without fear  and  tourists returned to climb the almost 300 stairs to the top to take in the gorgeous view after the 12 year closure.
With the Tower stable, restoration efforts shifted to the façade where lasers, chisels and syringes were employed to clean the 24,424 blocks of marble and limestone.  Constructed only 12km from the Mediterranean Sea, the tower is at the mercy of storms coming off the coast and has had to battle both human and pigeon damage!

I couldn't think of a better image to represent my journey than with the Leaning Tower of Pisa.  
For someone like me who likes to have a plan.....(thanks Dad!) the Tower of Pisa is me.  The danger of collapse has been identified and the experts are here…

Signs Your Foundation Needs Work

Everyone is different, but there are some common symptoms of depression: 
I stopped: sleeping well; going out; calling anyone or answering the phone; going to the gym; baking (which I love) and reading.  
I started: eating poorly; listening to people who were trying to help (my boss, my family doctor, my therapist, my spouse); getting excruciating phantom nerve pain and feeling helpless and stuck; jumping from one thing to the next and finding easy tasks overwhelming; crying and feeling hopeless and all the time wondering how everyone else seemed to have it all together.
I finally ended up in the adult mental health ward of the hospital--after my spouse pleaded with the ER doctor to send in a crisis worker instead of sending me home.  I stayed for 18 days-- surrounded by people who wanted to help and support me. They removed some of the weight I was carrying and launched a lifeline of support to shore me up and keep me safe---from hurting myself, or anyone else.

Removing the Bells and Shoring Up....

My visit to Pisa in 1970 was near the beginning of the 20 year investigation into how to stabilize the Tower while retaining the unique, identifiable, historic tilt.

What finally prompted its closure in 1990 was the collapse of the 72 m high Civic Tower in Pavia Italy, one year earlier, that killed four people and injured fifteen.  

No one wanted to see the Tower of Pisa, at 55 m high, succumb to a similar fate.  

So they made a plan.  

Fiirst, they removed the seven bells--22,000 lbs-- from the belfry at the top. 


 Then cables were cinched around the third level and anchored several hundred meters away to provide support.
This seems to me like a wise thing to do.  

Before you start digging around in the foundation and risking a total collapse, it is important to find ways to shore yourself up--to examine the heavy things you are carrying around in your belfry--to find help and support.  

Having had a total collapse myself some ten years ago, I was well aware of the signs that I was headed fo…

Work in Progress

Most people will recognize the structure in the background of this picture as the Leaning Tower of Pisa, located in Pisa, Italy.

The Tower began its slow "lean" into notoriety only a few years after the completion of the first floor construction began in 1173.  

The soft subsoil was unable to adequately support the weight of the structure when the second floor was added some five years later; the only thing saving it from toppling over was the 200 years of war that followed.  

The earth was able to shift and compress enough to support the foundation for future building.

Various strategies were employed to correct the lean prior to the project's completion some 200 years later, including building walls on some levels taller on one side than the other, but the tower continued its precarious list.  


It was eventually closed to the public in 1990 while a multinational task force of engineers, mathematicians, and historians met to discuss how to  preserve the newly designate UNESC…