Here they are folks, my answers to your One Question Wednesday questions, and wow, did I get some good ones! I really appreciate all of you stopping by to play along! As much as I love sending and receiving questions, reading your answers is even more fun, so after I post this I'll be starting around to see what you've all had to say. (Haven't had a chance to play yet? It's not too late, leave a question in the comments section and I'll answer it and update this post.) New readers here? Be sure to check out each of the blog links below, I guarantee you won't be disappointed!
1. From Bozo - What was the most incredible/powerful moment during your pregnancies and/or births of your children? With both of my children, the most powerful moment is the first time you touch them and hold them in your arms after loving them "under wraps" for nine long months! Just as powerful is their movement within you as they grow and develop. I can't tell you how incredible those little kicks and turns feel, and you actually miss them once your child is born!
Another powerful moment in pregancy - the loss of a child early in my pregnancy. He/she would have been between my two children in age. Tiny as it was, and so very new, I had already fallen in love with my baby. As I wept inconsolably, my far too pragmatic father said "well you couldn't afford another child anyway." Wow, compassion at it's finest. Needless to say, it didn't help me feel any better. Someday I'll get to meet that child though, I believe that!
2. From The Ranting Monkey - In your opinion, what is the greatest invention of your lifetime? Without a second thought, I'd have to say personal computers and the Internet... together they have brought the world to our doorstep, the library to our fingertips, and friends from around the world to our blogs! I would love to see computers and Internet available to everyone, everywhere. The more we communicate and understand each other, the better we can get along! (Yes, it's that hippie philosophy again, don't groan Monkey! :-)
3. From L - During times of stress, I use guided imagery to calm myself - my "go to" place is the beach - what would your calm "go to" place be and why? Growing up as a "flatlander" without access to oceans or mountains, I found my solace and comfort among the trees. In fact I had a special tree at the park, a huge old tree with a massive trunk, that I would go to and seat against and talk, cry, write, and reason out my life. Trees do have spirit, as do all created things, and I always felt safe and comforted there. If life gets too stressful, more than I can handle with a little bitching, distraction, or fukid cuddling, I can close my eyes and return to the land of lakes and trees.
I also found walking on the beach at sunset with my husband to be one of the most peaceful feelings I've ever experienced in my life. I wish it was far closer so I could escape there often to let my spirit float free!
4. From Maria - Are you as content as you sound? Or, is marriage a bit harder than you bargained for? I have to answer this question with a resounding YES, Maria! John is probably the easiest person to live with one could imagine. (And Lord knows it's not easy for him to live with me!!) He is as comfortable as an old pair of blue jeans. He makes me feel safe and secure, he is compassionate and understanding, doesn't force me to be or do things that I'm not comfortable with, humors me beyond belief, and makes me laugh!
Is he perfect - oh heck no, no one is. His worst character fault? He is grumpy in the mornings before he's had his first cup of caffeine. But I am only with him when he wakes on Sunday mornings, and I make sure the coffee is in his mug and waiting! :-) He is also an excellent planner/packer and if you aren't ready you'd best just get out of his way, 'cuz he will do it for you! I learned that quickly! :-) I would marry him again in a minute, there's not a single day I've second-guessed that decision or regretted it, and I find that pretty amazing after three really horrible marriages that I spent more days crying over than feeling loved.
Before I met John I really thought that living alone would be the life for me, that I would relish all that freedom, but you know it soon got old and lonely, and I found that having someone to share your life with (whether you choose to live together or not) makes all the difference. I am blessed that John allows me to retain my independent spirit so I don't have to be a nice little domesticated wife. I don't do well with that role at all! :-)
5. From Chele - There are many things that comfort us in life. What would you say is the one thing in life that you find the most comforting? First and foremost - John comforts me. No matter what doesn't feel right about my life, cuddling next to him makes it all better. He seems to know just the right things to say and do and not say or do. Second in line would be my furkids who are or so telepathic in knowing when I need some extra lovin and my lap will soon be full of purring furballs. A close third would be chocolate... nothing cures all ills, at least temporarily, like a piece of awesome fudge! :-)
6. From Kristi - Do you still keep in touch with the kids on the reservation? I know you developed some very close relationships. Indeed I do, Kristi, though the nature of our communication has changed over the years from written letters and visits to the wonderful advent of the Internet which they are able to access at school, often at home, and some on their cellphones. Someday soon when I am feeling strong I will write the story of how their lives have changed since I first met up with them now ten years ago. I love these kids as if they were my own children/grandchildren. I rejoice for their victories and weep at their defeats.
Life is very hard on the rez, it is not kind to children or any living thing. One committed suicide at 14 years old, several others have tried and thankfully not succeeded. It rips holes in my heart. But they know without a doubt that I love them ,and always will. I am certain we will remain friends when they are grown, and until the day I die! John wants to go to Dakota to meet them when we have the time and can afford the journey. I so miss seeing those beautiful faces!
7. From Domestic Recluse - What's one thing you've either wanted to try, you wished you could do, or you wish you had the talent for -- and what's stopping you from pursuing/attempting it? When it comes to naughty things, DR, there isn't much I haven't tried. Let's just say I've been around the block a few times in 58 years of living. You'd have to ask specifics on that. ;-) I regret very little of it and call it learning experiences - or I plead temporary insanity!
The one thing I wish I could do... run a no-kill cat sanctuary. Keeping me from doing that is obviously the lack of financial backing and the need to have an income. But if I ever win the lottery, you can bet that's just what my daughter and I would do. And, as is true in my house as well... most of the cats would likely prefer John's company. For some reason cats are really drawn to him. I like to think they can sense the loving, gentle spirit inside this big furry man!
8. From Lily - There is the belief that one has a choice after they die, whether to come back and live life again, or to spend the rest of eternity in Nirvana. Which would you choose? I believe that it is entirely possible we might have the opportunity to live more than one lifetime, to reincarnate so to speak. Because I have a tendency to do everything the hard way, I would most likely choose to forgo the relative ease of living in Nirvana for another go at the challenges of life to see what I could learn the next time around and what folks I could meet! :-) I also believe that we intereact with some of same people in different lives, just assuming different roles and relationships. That would explain the sense of familiarity with someone you just met.
9. From Jo-Anne - Do you prefer to wear shoes at home or go barefoot? I have a strong dislike for shoes, Jo-Anne! They make my feet feel cramped and confined. I have wide feet and as a child my shoes often felt tight and restrictive so maybe that's why I now abandon shoes the minute I am in the door at home. We never wear shoes in our house, only putting them on as we go to leave.
Outside I much prefer to wear sandals all year round (except when it actually snows) so my toes can wiggle and my feet can enjoy the fresh air! Sadly, at my current job sandals of any kind are banned, so I'm forced to opt for fairly comfortable shoes, but they still make me grumpy! I don't own high heels, and never will. Why would I do that to my feet?? In fact I wear the same shoes over and over 'til they are worn and and then replaced. I'm definitely not a high-fashion girl and I don't collect high dollar shoes.
Barefoot is my first love, though it wasn't allowed in our house as children because my mom said it left footprints on her nicely waxed kitchen floor! Put me in a soft patch of green grass in my bare feet (no stickers please) and I am in hog-heaven! How I miss green grass lawns! (There are manicured lawns in town but with ever-increasing water restrictions those are not faring well in our drought. God didn't really intend for folks to grow grass or much of anything else in the desert southwest! :-)
10. From Cheryl - I'm curious about the drilling operation being erected by your house. What kind of an impact has it had on you? It turned out to be not as bad of an experience as we anticipated Cheryl. We had a drilling rig about 100 feet from our house for about 3 months, and it ran 24 hours a day/night with lights, motors, crews and all. At first we were hesitant to use the hot tub on our deck, then said to hell with it, wrapping in our towels for the run to and fro. Two ol' fat folks in the tub don't really make for great viewing, and they never seemed to notice. John said he could hear the drilling motors running at night, but I am pretty deaf when I take out my hearing aids so they didn't bother me at all. Our bedroom window does not face that direction thankfully, so the lights weren't really a problem either.
I also have to say that the company followed thru on their promise to return the mudpits which occupied the full width of the north end of back yard, to their original state, carefully filling and packing and apparently re-planting ground cover 'cuz something green is coming up back there, though we had to wait several months for them to get out here and get it done. The pumpjack itself was mercifully located just across our property line on the vacant land to the West, and we are so grateful we didn't end up with it in our yard as many folks in this area have. It is painted desert colors and not that much of an eyesore. Everyone around here is so used to seeing them that we take them for natural landscaping. :-) Oil drilling is big business in this area, at night I can stand outside and see maybe 20 drilling drigs running in the surrounding distance, property owners have no say of where they will be put in, we own surface rights only. You can't fight big oil and win, trust me, many have tried.
I think that's a wrap on my One Question Wednesday Q&A session for this week, I swear my posts are so long it amazes me anyone takes the time to read this stuff!! If any late questions come in, I'll add the answers to them below. Again, thank you all for playing, for reading, and most of all for sharing your own lives, words, and friendship with me here in the blogsphere, you expand my world and add so much pleasure to my days! Adios amigos!