Saturday, August 29, 2020

To Nanaimo

 I could hardly wait to get started on the deck yesterday. It was another stunning day.

It began with the community dog walk and then all day yesterday was spent working on the deck. 

There was a lot more work to do than I foresaw; it seemed to take forever. But, I took several breaks to give my arms and shoulders some time to recover. I’ve been scraping and brushing for quite a few days in a row and they were sore. 

Around noon, I became aware of the constant cry of a Woodpecker. It went on and on. So, I stopped work to go indoors for a drink and discovered that the crier was a beautiful Pileated male sitting on the fence near the empty suet container. I got a refill, took it out and put in the feeder and, as soon as I stepped away from it, Mr. Woodpecker was pecking like mad at the suet. It was as though he was calling me to attend to him. They are truly magnificent birds.

When I stopped for lunch, I did not want to go back to work. However, I didn’t have much left to do so I managed to drag my (no longer fat) ass back out the door. It’s hard when I no longer can look forward to half a pie or some other such baked reward at the end of the day.

I finished the house deck. I’m not going to re-do the sections that aren’t up to par and I haven’t done the shed deck. They’ll get done next week. Instead, Sheba and I are going to go as foot passengers to Nanaimo for a walk about, and I’m going to have an ice cream cone. It’s a beautiful day.

Tomorrow is predicted to be cool and cloudy, so I’ll be indoors. But after that, a long stretch of sunny and toasty warm weather is coming. My plan is to start working on the part of the front yard that’s never been touched.

It’s going to be interesting for me to see how well I speak on this jaunt today. Here, on Gabriola, I am a fluent speaker. I can go for days without any speech difficulties, but I still have trouble with clerks in stores (who are strangers). 

I have, on average, one mini-meltdown a month. 

Today will give me a chance to assess my new normal a little further afield.

The absence of posts here about my speech speaks strongly to how comfortable I am with my condition. Just as each day makes Gabriola feel more and more like home, so does each day make me increasingly comfortable with having compromised mental health.

I have built myself a sanctuary on a silent island. I have created a park-like backyard that is private and filled my life with de-stressors—pets, hot tub, fountain, hammock, studio, fireplace, classical music and lots and lots of plants—where I can live and continue to heal.

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