102 days to Antarctica…”Coat Of Many Colors” Dolly Parton


Approximately 10 minutes
reading time

“We must be willing to get
rid of the life we’ve planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.
The old skin has to be shed before the new one can come.”

Hello, I
hope that you are well and that your week has been a good one. I can’t believe the
date and that another week has passed. Thanks for joining me. Schrodie and I
have had a mostly good week, although not an easy one. We remain hopeful that
these easier and relaxing times are on a near horizon.

As a
long-time fan and admirer of Joseph Campbell, I recall his words as I believe
this to be the best way to live. We cannot control what happens to us or what
impact other people have on us, all we can do is play our hand the best we can
by controlling our responses via our thoughts, decisions, choices and actions.
We too, like reptiles need to shed our skins constantly. I don’t make plans,
never have as I understand the flaw and peril of plans in life. I have goals
and work to achieve them whilst living consciously in the present, mindful of
both the future and the past. So far, so good. I am grateful.

countdown has begun. It’s only forty eight days to Christmas and only fifty
four days until 2022. Oh my! Christmas time is my favourite time of the year
because it brings out the best of humanity, although not without its balance.
Even though both my Uncle and Mummy both died on Christmas Eve, we still
Celebrate the Birth of Jesus and the Joys, Hope and Promise of the Season and
of Humanity and Life whilst remembering them. This is a hard balancing act,
particularly as we need to show the children how this is done and it can be an all-encompassing
Celebration of Life.

I have had
no time to consider gifts. It’s hard with so many more pressing considerations
and without money, particularly when I am starting my entire life over when I
had all but retired. There is still time. I always put much thought and
considerations into my gifts, there is still time.

What a crazy
week. Sadness gripped me when I learned that my lifelong Hero, Jon Bon Jovi was
sick with Covid-19. I was gladdened to hear him report that he was okay. After
about a week of having Covid-19, Jon said that he is feeling better and that
it’s a terrible illness. He was double vaccinated and still caught it and found
out after a quick test before he headed on stage for a Concert at Miami Beach,
Florida on 31st October. Happy Halloween! Perhaps it was the vaccine
that saved him. Who knows?

I have been
so busy. Progress on my home is continuing, with my bushfire rebuild almost at
lock-up. For the moment my priority is going home. Starting over is exciting
and in some ways filled with trepidation, mainly as I don’t currently have
control of much in my life. This will improve once I can return home and all
these people currently in my life because of circumstance, will be gone.

It is
wonderful being back out into the world. Socializing and having fun. I force
myself to go out as I know it’s the best thing to do when you don’t necessarily
feel like it and am glad that it is fun and an opportunity to laugh with
friends, old and new. I’m excited to be meeting up with some of my favourite
people and old friends whom I love. Some of them I haven’t seen since my life
went to Hell in a hand basket in 2020 when my home burned down and I lost
everything including my health, well-being, independence and almost succumbed
to Death and Hades, countless times.

A friend
sent me an old photo of us from Christmas 2010 and I almost didn’t recognise
myself. We both love Christmas and every year for many years we had our photo
taken with Santa at David Jones in Sydney’s CBD each Christmas. We were
supposed to continue into old age or until we couldn’t anymore. Life got in the
way. I no longer have my photos so I was grateful to receive a copy from her. I
couldn’t believe how different I looked eleven years ago. It’s not so much
about age, just different. My belief has always been that our story is written
on our face and this is the difference I see in all these photos. I have also
found photos of myself on various international travel jaunts from 2018 and
2019, then photos of myself over 2020 and 2021. It’s very confronting,
especially seeing how sick I was and looked, like the living dead, it’s rather
horrifying and saddening. While I was having industrial strength Chemotherapy
and when I was totally disabled. I am so glad and grateful that I don’t look
like that anymore. Most especially I am grateful that I am not sick, dying or
disabled anymore. It’s a wonder everybody didn’t run away from me, although I
pushed them away during the worst of it all and didn’t tell them of my
condition or experience until it had passed. I am grateful for the kindness,
love, care and generosity shown to me by so many, most especially by some
incredibly wonderful and special people throughout this time. It was more than
I could have ever imagined or believed.

At this time
of year, it reminds me of The Little Drummer Boy and Baby Jesus. It reminds me
of Joseph and his Coat of Many Colours, his father’s treasured gift to his favourite son, a multi-coloured coat, from the Bible’s Old Testament. I am also
reminded of Dolly Parton and her “Coat of Many Colours”. Like Joseph, Dolly’s coat was a gift to keep her warm, made lovingly for her from scraps of cloth, by her mother. I must have been about
five when mummy told me about Dolly Parton’s story and this song. I have never
forgotten it and have heard Dolly tell her story as well. Mummy’s favourite
music was Country and Western as it was then, now it’s Country. I grew up
listening to and loving Dolly. Is there anyone in the World who doesn’t love
Dolly? I doubt this would be possible. Her story and her music are wonderful
and inspiring. Mummy always told me about the people behind everything she
taught me. I am so grateful to her for all the gifts she gave me. They have
helped me through these tragedies, horrible, terrible times which have been the
worst of my life and beyond imagining. Dolly’s beautiful and inspiring song about
love, joy, pride, gratitude and most of all perspective, is this week’s song of
the week. I hope that you enjoy the song and the sentiment as much as I do. I
admire Dolly Parton for her colour in a bleak world, for her candour and her
courage, most especially her spirit and her generosity. Maybe I’ll go to “Dolly
World” in Tennessee when I next go to the States and visit the South. There are still so many
things I have not yet done. They aren’t essential things to my happiness but
would be a lovely bonus in my life. I learned a lot about the American South
when I was little, for so many reasons. I have been and seen much but not yet

Since January
2020 and all that has happened to me, I often joke that I have suffered four of
the seven plagues, blights on humanity as told by Joseph. So far, I have survived fire, flood,
famine, plague and pestilence. It seems that I have survived five of the seven

Outside, the
rain is torrential and unyielding, the air is cold as it is inside our
beautiful sandstone cottage. It is once again like winter time. The expensive
gas, under floor heater is on and has been running constantly. I hate discomfort.
I would rather starve than be uncomfortable. Happily the sun does manage to
burst through the dark, black clouds for a little while most days. We have
managed our walks, every day except today. It is simply too wet. Schrodie has
taken us on some lovely, new and long walks through the bush. Schrodie loves
the bush, as do I. I can’t let him off the lead because there are too many
dangerous risks and creatures. As a Terrier he will sniff, seek out, chase any
animal, no matter how dangerous to him, so he stays on the lead much as I wish
I could leave him run and play off-lead. Yesterday I thought we were lost and
without water in the heat but we made it out safely and had a good drink once
we were home. Schrodie had a drink from the running stream flowing into the
creek. This is a benefit of all the rain. We dance every day and have fun, for
which we are both grateful.

Rain makes
me grateful that we all have enough to drink and live well as it replenishes
our ever dwindling global water supplies. Most especially I am glad that it
wards off bushfires in the heat. May what happened over the 2019/2020 Black Summer
and those Bushfires, never happen again, anywhere. On our way home the other
day, there was the stench of smoke along the highway. I prayed that it was back
burning and not a fire. The air was dark and thick as we approached our
turn-off. I had closed the windows and blocked the outside air entering the car
but the smell of smoke was inescapable. We will never forget this smell. It
awakened a strange type of feeling, a weird fear and anxiety of memories past.
I heard and saw the fire trucks in the bush and still hoped that it was
back-burning. After a conversation with others later, this back burning was
confirmed and I was relieved.

Australian Series “Fire” on ABC has been hard to watch. It made me feel proud
of myself for how I had handled this horrific experience and tragedy. This was
unexpected and very peculiar. The show is very well made and the depictions of
the experience are excellent. My friend said that she had lived through it and
couldn’t bear to watch it and didn’t want to, which I completely understand. We
were all traumatised, in various capacities, by what happened to us and others
during that experience. My experience was unbelievable, as the fires and losing
everything was the best thing that happened to me. The horrors are ever
present. I am grateful and glad to be recovering and restoring my body, my home
and my life.

Fencing has
become a nightmare issue for me to deal with as resources are limited and
astronomically expensive. I don’t know what to do and worry about the ever
increasing expenses to finish my home, so we can return and live safely and
well. Steel looks to be the safest and most practical, most economic solution
but the cost is a lack of aesthetics and privacy. I am collating options and
pricing. The 80 metre wooden paling fence built by my neighbour, inside my
yard, may need to stay, for it is another problem with which I must deal and
finance. This is unnecessary for me at this point in time as I lack the energy,
inclination and resources. Choose your battles Theodora. This one can wait.

Curtains for
my house with its over-sized glass windows and doors has turned into a major
issue and concern. I spoke with two people about getting curtains made after I
purchased the most beautiful woollen brocade and flocked cotton chenille fabrics
but they won’t make what I want. They told me I can only use tracks, which they
happen to sell, for my curtains because of the rod lengths required. This is
ludicrous and simply not true. They only know how to do what they do and my
requirements are apparently outside the norm, even though they are simple. The
expense will be great. I even considered agreeing to having pleated curtains
which I do not want in my home. I want beautiful, elegant, simple curtains. I
fear that the fabric will be wasted and there is none to spare. I have decided
to make my own curtains. I have never made curtains. There are instructions
which I have found and they seem simple enough. Matching the patterns within
the fabric is the most important consideration, even though sewing is not my
greatest strength, I will manage. At least I can lay the fabric on the floor to
cut, assemble and arrange it. As I have no furniture, this will be easy.
Thankfully it will be Summer time so cold is not an issue if it takes me some
time to complete the curtains and have the rods installed. I need to buy a new sewing
machine. I’m not sure what to buy. I loved my Janome machine and my Overlocker.
This will be a priority once I can return home. Something else to look forward
to in the near future. I am excited, nervous and anxious as I don’t know when I
can return home.

Yesterday I
had my Benralizumab after four months, having missed my last injection because
of the Covid Vaccine. Today I noticed that the tiny capillaries, blood vessels,
on my face, around my eyes are broken again. This and bleeding eyes are what
happen to me, as well as swelling of my feet. These are not obvious to others
but to me. I have researched that these are rare side-effects of this
biological drug and the Methotrexate. I want to stop them both as soon as
possible. At the end of this month I come off Prednisone completely, hopefully
forever. I am okay but still have a malaise, fatigue and exhaustion. I am
always running around completing chores, balanced by socialising and fun. I am
trying to eat better and regularly. I have cut down on my sugar intake. I am
eating fruit every day. My gums are okay again so the Scurvy has abated. I take
my supplements daily but not my Women’s multi-vitamin when I take my
Methotrexate since I discovered the Folate which blocks the Methotrexate. My
health and strength are improving, against all the odds. I still laugh and play
every day, for which I am grateful, especially on the hardest days.

In order to
Celebrate a friend’s personal milestone we were able to go out to a Restaurant
and have a wonderful, delicious meal in a splendid environment. It was
fabulous. The Martini’s were a wonderful bonus. It made me realise how I have missed Martini’s.

Today I have
prepared a chicken stew with chicken drumsticks and mixed frozen vegetables, a
tin of tomatoes and some tomato paste for richness, depth of flavour and depth of colour which really matters to me. This was seasoned simply with salt and pepper. It
is hearty comfort food on a cold, wet day. It is a simple, easy, quick, nutritious
and cheap meal without fat. I’ll have some bread to make my two carbohydrate counts for
my Type 1 Diabetes. It smells delicious.

As for
Antarctica, who knows if and when I will ever get there as my current booking
deadline looms. I have not yet even had time to think much about my trip or
prepare. Although I have researched a little into the best gear to take on my
journey but still have much research and preparation. I may not be ready but it
will still be a dream come true. Once again, I have surrendered to the Universe
and wait, impatiently, excitedly, for my future to unfold.

May your
week be a good one. May there be joy and delight in your every day, no matter
how small. Smile as often as you can as it will make you feel better. Laugh
every day and do something to fill your heart with joy. Thank you for your
company. As always, I hope that you feel better leaving Schrodie’s Mummy than
when you arrived. I hope you enjoy my other posts and pages. May they interest,
inspire and delight you in some way, as they do, me. Please refer anyone that
you think might benefit from visiting us here.

Have fun,
take care, stay happy and well.

Bye from us,
for now.

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