Thursday, October 30, 2014

Having low expectations

(In the setting sun ...)
I seem to be dithering these days, somewhat more than usual.  I can't seem to settle on knitting, sewing, dyeing or battening down the hatches in preparation for winter.  I've knit a little (I actually finished my capelet from the Fiber Craft Studio yarn that I bought at Rhinebeck, though it still needs a good wet blocking), cut out a pattern for a knit dress, washed some linen for a tunic, brought a few pots of plants into the greenhouse to keep them growing through the winter and prepared my collection of pokeberries into a dye solution, but I just can't seem to buckle down and follow through with anything.  I think partly it's because I'm in an uncomfortable in-between place mentally.  I'm feeling, once again, that this disease is getting the upper hand. Last week, my rheumatologist decided to up my medication to something that will require me to inject myself once a week.  In some ways, I'm glad for the change in meds because the one I'm on now is causing my hair to fall out, which is not that surprising, considering it is a cancer drug.  Luckily, I have a lot of hair, but it's pretty disconcerting to see how much of it is coming out every day and I can definitely tell that I've lost a lot already. Besides some continuing issues with joint pain, one of the other side effects is that I feel so tired much of the time.  I had hoped to feel more in control at this point, but I suppose it's just another lesson in learning that control is an illusion.

On a positive note, my sheep are bringing me so much peace right now.  As difficult as it has been to reduce the size of my flock, it's wonderful to now have a whole group that are so gentle and calm.  Nearly every evening, while Aslan is eating his dinner on the outside of the fence, I take my little wooden folding stool into the field and sit down to visit with the girls.  If you follow me on Instagram, you will likely have seen a number of photos taken during my evening visitations with the sheep.  It's lovely to have one or two of them come and put their heavy heads upon my shoulder, lean gently into me and wait for scratches behind their ears or under their chins.  It's a time of meditation for me really, centering me, allowing me to slow my internal dialogue, breathe into their soft fleece and feel their solid presence. It's comforting in a way I can't really describe and a reminds me of why I chose to raise sheep all those many years ago.  I'm so grateful I have them in my life.

So, tomorrow is November.  Time to get my act together and begin thinking about having a sane and peaceful holiday season - one of low expectations and more enjoyment.  The word for this year will be simplify!


  1. Tomorrow's actually still October so you get a bonus day :-D.

  2. Please let me know if there's anything I can do. I mean it.

  3. I have read your blog for a few years and shame on me for not commenting. Sometimes we are just shy and hesitant.
    I do so hope that you find some physical comfort. Pain is so debilitating. I do not have RA but have osteoarthritis and it can certainly hurt. I admire your courage and glee that you meet each day with. I do understand the companionship of sheep. We used to raise God, years ago......and pigs. Both boys are grown, we are older than Hell in most people's eyes..but, in spite of many things, it is a good life. I have been trying to spin..snort!! I am getting better, but am so slow..thumbs and arms do not do well at times.
    I do find such inspiration in all that you do and thank you for being able to peek into your life. Do not ever forget what a hard worker you have been and what a wonderful shepherd you have and are.
    With admiration, Ellen.

  4. I wish you much success with the new type of medicine. I don't do social media of any kind so I can't see the Instagram posts but I'm sure the girls are a real comfort to you. They just seem to know when we want their attention and gladly give it. Feel better.