Comforting Order

WordPress, a huge blogging website, gives a one word prompt to help stimulate writing ideas in their Daily Prompt. At 5 am it’s hard to know where to start with a post, but already over 400 bloggers have written about “order” today. The word rolled around in my mind and I finally looked up the actual definition. It’s one of those words that is both a noun and a verb, with numerous definitions. As a noun it could mean a military order from a superior, or a way to measure something or the condition of a situation or something you place at the bakery for those yummy cookies. As a verb there are just as many variables from rules and regulations to commands and instructions from someone in authority.

The meaning that came to mind when I saw the word was “orderliness or condition” and how it affects my “psyche” which comes from the Greek word meaning “mind, spirit, soul, breath or ones very life.” Enough from Webster’s dictionary. It just helps you see where I am going with this prompt.

My life has been in turmoil the past few years and order has finally been restored both physically and mentally. We sold The Pooch, our Dog Daycare and Boarding facility in Denver in 2014 and it absolutely crushed us. We were lost after the excitement of the big sale wore off. Then we sold our brand new home of only two years to move away from the very loud barky dogs next door and to be closer to our grandchildren, not necessarily in that order but kind of. We spent some of our sale proceeds and bought a second home in Phoenix for the winter months. No more shoveling snow and walking our old dogs or ourselves on icy sidewalks.

Two body reconstructive surgeries followed in April and July 2015 to remove 15 pounds of sagging skin left over from losing 100 pounds twice in my life, naturally and without any weight loss surgery. I can lose it on my own but I can pack it right back on.  Can anyone out there relate? Two years later after all of that expense and searing, indescribable pain, I am still battling with my weight but winning this time. I am only 6 pounds heavier than I was after the reconstruction that left ugly scars all over my body.

Then we lost both of our beloved dogs last summer, Mollie who unexpectedly died from a burst tumor bleeding into her stomach, then Bristol exactly two months later when his debilitating degenerative myelopathy had taken its toll on his backside.  Saying goodbye to him was gut wrenching as we were alone for the first time in almost 30 years. My very psyche was crushed under the weight of all of these changes.

There was no order in my life. I was lost and didn’t know how to take the first step. I slept late, ate Milk Duds and played video games on my IPad from morning to night.  I stopped writing, reading, cooking, shopping and living. I could not sleep and the weight crept back on, almost 20 pounds from my post surgery weight.  I put on a happy face when our grandkids came over, but as soon as they left, I crawled back into my cave, the dark recess in my mind where I closed myself off from friends and family.

When there is no order in your life, there is chaos in your mind, spirit, soul and the very breath of your life.

My husband and I had to adjust to all of these changes and slowly healed. The holidays were special, a return to our past, making Halloween costumes to go trick or treating with our grandkids and their mom and dad. We made lots of yummy food, did fun craft projects together and decorated the house for all the holidays. Afterwards I went on an extremely low carb diet for six weeks that was unbelievably hard and resulted in only a three pound loss. A life without Milk Duds is a very sad life.

The turning point in our lives was completely free, and found in a small cardboard box. Two tiny little puppies had been abandoned in Denver while we were back there visiting with family and I saw the picture our veterinarian had posted on Facebook early one morning when I couldn’t sleep. We adopted those 3 and 4 pound puppies and our life spun around, there was order in our lives even with the new craziness brought on by owning two 8 week old puppies. I also write a blog at that has numerous stories about them, our old dogs and The Pooch, which we still talk about all the time.

We sold the second house we had bought here in Phoenix in two years. These houses just weren’t right for us, bad or sad memories, too small or too far away, too much maintenance and they just didn’t feel like a home. They were just houses, like a rental one you stay at on vacation. We bought a home in Sun City, the original retirement community of 26,000 homes that Del Webb built almost 50 years ago, west of Phoenix and Scottsdale. A place I said I would never live in. Who wants to live around just seniors?

Turns out that these seniors really know how to have fun. I have already passed my stained glass course and am now taking an art class, we went to two free concerts and Will golfed three times a week before our scorching 110+ weather started and the snow birds flew the coupe. After our move six weeks ago, I started swimming again for the first time in two years and already have lost 9 pounds. No low carb diet, no diet all, just healthier foods and no Milk Duds. I don’t even want them any more.

Our “new” old house is all fixed up, with pictures hung, everything unpacked and all settled in. I have been writing non-stop the past two weeks in both of my blogs and my book has almost 60 pages written and the cover has been designed. I swim two miles a week, the equivalent of jogging six miles. I have several new business consulting projects under way. I am physically and mentally stronger than ever before.

My psyche has been restored, my mind, spirit, and soul are not spinning out of control, there is comforting order in my life once again.

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