aearwen2: (Default)
Just a quick note to those whom I have no other contact outside LJ: my husband of 41 years died midday Wednesday. It was not unexpected, but I had thought I had just a little more time; but it was quick, quiet and merciful in that he just... stopped. After 9 months in nursing care/hospital, he was evidently ready to move on.

That afternoon, my daughter Súl and I drove out to one of the more local areas of California wildflower "super-bloom". The breeze was gentle, the meadowlarks were singing their little hearts out, and the scent of lupin was SOOO sweet. It was a great way, and a good place, to begin the process of accepting my new reality. I'd like to think that, after 9 months of being bedridden and unable to do for himself at all, Bill tagged along for the ride and enjoyed the view with us. I'd insert a pic of what we saw, but both LJ and DW are less than transparent on how to do that now. Sorry about that.

Anyhoo, if I go silent and dark for a while, you guys know what's up. I'm dealing, and I'll be back... eventually.
aearwen2: (Default)
I now have a small inkling of what Celeborn must have felt after Galadriel and Nenya left Lothlórien. There is a tree-shaped hole in my world now, and I’m surprised to find myself genuinely grieving.

When my parents bought this property over 50 years ago, it came with an OLD, mature and heavy-bearing English walnut tree. In good years, it could produce – all on its own, mind you – over two hundred pounds of nuts per year. It stood a proud thirty-plus feet tall and was a lush green. It was the cornerstone of our homestead, and I’ve had it in my life for most of my life.

Long story short, California has suffered a devastating drought for many years, and that drought has hit this area particularly hard. Many trees – not just nut trees – have succumbed to the drought. We tried to water this one, but evidently our efforts were just not sufficient to its needs, or to the needs of the daughter tree that had sprouted about ten feet away and my dad allowed to grow.

The daughter tree died about five years ago – and finally broke off at ground level and fell in a storm with high winds this past winter, barely missing taking out dog houses and fences, and falling short of taking out my garage by maybe a foot. My daughter and I understood the message the Universe was sending us – especially since the mother tree, which had tried desperately to survive, had turned up its toes abruptly in September. That message was: “I can be merciful once. You need to take care of this NOW.”

Not exactly a message to ignore. Especially when a couple of friends told me that (1) the tree was leaning; (2) the ground was beginning to buckle and rise; and most importantly (3) if it fell in the direction it was leaning, it would take out my fence, the fence of 3 neighbors and at least two storage sheds. The tree had to go – it was dead, and no amount of wishful thinking was going to resurrect it.

Yesterday, I found a service who could do it within a budget that had already been cleaned out by needing to replace my car’s transmission. These guys will take payments, and asked a reasonable fee, given they didn’t need to haul it away. FWIW, Angie’s List for the win!!

That said, however, there will be no chipper for my old friend tree. The tree service isn’t going to judst haul it away to the landfill, or take it to a shredder. I have friends who want the wood for firewood and bonfire wood – beneficial uses for people I know and love. They will clean up the mess on the ground, and get hours of enjoyment from it. My tree will do one last service.

But the back corner of my property will be empty. And I will be sad for many days to come. Before the guys came, I went out and said goodbye, and shed my tears.

RIP old friend. You were steadfast and tall and so generous with your nuts, and you shared so many of my celebrations and needs for a shoulder to cry on. You will be missed.

Update on Aearwen's life otherwise - scroll by if not interested. )

So there you are. Been a busy last couple of days, but at least I don't have to worry about my tree harming my property or the property of others anymore. The wind can blow through the leaves of the avocado trees that line my driveway, and I don't have to cringe in dread.

Life is good, it says in the fine print. For now, I agree.
aearwen2: (Default)
Just a quick note to inform you all that I am going to start posting the lynch-pin story to the entire IDD!verse series. You will be able to find it at I Dhaerlend Dadui. I did post this to both FFN and AO3, but only as a teaser to bring folks to my webpage. Further chapters will ONLY appear at my personal site.

Hope you enjoy.
aearwen2: (Default)
I got a call from the hospital tonite; my husband has been re-admitted to the ICU with extremely high CO2 numbers, spiking fevers, and unresponsiveness. I will be talking to Hospice sometime tomorrow, as he finally sometime yesterday or today has expressed a wish to come home one last time. I will see it done, if at all humanly possible.

My daughter and I have been preparing ourselves to the extent we could for this, but there really ISN'T any way to prepare for this, is there? We've been married 40 years - he will leave a huge hole in my world.

I'll see you folks on the other side of the dark tunnel I'm in. Until then, hug your loved ones tightly. Time is not our friend.

Namasté.
aearwen2: (Default)
I am going to start posting some of the finished LOTR fics that sit on my hard drive, but probably only to my personal archive. That way I can keep better track of when and what I've posted. What's more, as an incentive for folks to visit over there, I will be posting some "spoiler" fics in my "I Dhaerlend Dadui" story-verse, as well as (perhaps) beginning to finally post that monster itself. IDD and the spoiler stuff, as well as everything else from here on, will be posted nowhere else.

Today's offering: Confessions - Celebrían discovers a memento that exposes Elrond's secret shame. This tale is a direct sequel to "In The House Of Elrond" and "Memento", but takes place long after both.
aearwen2: (Default)
I am posting one of the stories I have long since finished but, for some reason, never bothered to post anywhere before. However, from now on, I will probably be posting only to my private archive, and not to FFN or any of the others. It will make it very easy for me to keep track of what I posted and when I last did. I do have a few things that should be put out there - and as a treat for those who visit there, I will start posting what are in essence "spoiler" fics in the I Dhaerlend Dadui story-verse.

This one, in fact, is a direct sequel to In The House Of Elrond. As it isn't already on FFN, or AO3, it may not have gotten any exposure. But enjoy...

Memento
aearwen2: (Default)
This is especially for those whom I don't have friended on Facebook.

My husband is back in the hospital for the seventh time this calendar year with sepsis, this time aggravated by congestive heart failure as well as not tolerating the antibiotics any longer. He is not doing well - has been in for a week with no real discernable improvement. He is both physically and cognatively failing badly.

This is just to let you all know that I'm probably not going to be very active anywhere until things settle down - one way or the other. I have a fair support system, so I'm managing - barely. I'm in a fragile place, however, as Bill & I have been married for over 40 years. This is very hard to watch.

If any of you have, or know anybody who has, diabetes - please!! Do NOT let them ignore it, or brush off advice on eating right and/or other things recommended. Diabetes is a killer. It's the underlying cause of my hubby's problems now. Talk to them, don't let them get away with not doing all they can to mitigate. You do NOT want them - or you, if it's you - to go through what Bill has been through in the last three years.

Anyhoo. That's it. I'll be back when life, in it's infinite complexity, calms down enough that I can be more functional again.

Laters, all.
aearwen2: (Default)
I will understand if you want to scroll past this, honestly. If it weren't my life, I would just as soon scroll by myself, frankly... )

Can I resign as a grown-up human? Huh? Please? All I want to do lately is crawl into a hole and pull the hole in after me and vegetate for a day or three. Instead, I'll just smile and keep on going.

*Sigh*

*Sigh*

Jan. 28th, 2018 12:42 pm
aearwen2: (Default)
Hubby's back in hospital - pneumonia this time. Amazing how, in less than 12 hours, he can go from pretty much normal to needing an ambulance.

I'm wrecked.

Laterz.
aearwen2: (Default)
Totally understandable if you just scroll past this. )

Sorry. Just had to get that out. Thanks for listening for those who read the rant, and apologies to those who'd rather not hear such things. Hopefully I won't be in this state again for a good long time.
aearwen2: (Default)
Just a note for anybody wondering just what it is that has me so emotionally & psychologically depleted:

If you don't want to read me rant about my DH's health, please scroll by - no harm, no foul. )

Okay. I've got it out of my system.

Have a good day, all...
aearwen2: (Default)
This is one of several LOTR fics that have sat completed on my hard drive that I somehow managed never to post in a public forum. As are most of my LOTR fics, this one fits into my vision of "how things went" that I call my IDD!verse.

It Isn't the Same )
aearwen2: (Default)
Yes, I am still upright, breathing, and ambulatory - contrary to popular notions to the contrary. What's more, I'm actually starting to write again, so I thought it might be a good time to post a heads-up that I'm gonna be a little bit more active. At least for a while.

My Muse is actually getting down to work on IDD again - much to my relief. It's a huge project that is approaching the denoument stage, and I'd like to be able to type The End on that one. As it is, some of the bits I'll be posting I wrote quest a while ago but only posted to the online LOTR writers' workshop Lizard Council. Since they hold no "spoilers" for anything unpublished as yet (like IDD) I've no idea why I didn't give them a wider audience.

As it is, IDD is one of two novel-length LOTR fics I'm still working on in that particular !verse, and the one on which so much else depends. I want it finished in the worst kind of way, believe me! I also realize I need to continue posting my The Pretender unfinished fic as well - readers there have been pretty patient. Time for me to come out from that rock I've been hiding under for a while now.

Part of the reason I've been so quiet is because I'm dealing with an invalided husband, whose health is only now starting to kinda-sorta level off a bit. He's been in and out of hospital more times than I can remember now in the last two to three years, coming close to outright dying the last few times. This is a tall (he was once 6'3") and BIG, strong man who is now bent to 6' and needs a walker to move around. He has a chronic infection as the result of NOT doing what he was supposed to about his diabetes, compounded with an occasional MRSA flare-up. Sciatica has made it impossible for him to drive a car or even get up & down out of chairs easily. For a while, I was desperately worried he was going to lose at least one leg - and he's still fighting that battle (and maybe, in a teenie little way, winning.)

Lesson to be learned there: if you get a diagnosis of diabetes, do NOT ignore it or the advice given. That disease is horrible, if not kept in control from Day 1!!!

Not knowing when and/or if his health would take a sudden nose-dive that would land him in the ICU yet again can be very taxing on a spouse or support person/family. And the current health care/financial end of things here in the US and in our household is far less rosy than it was "back when". Luckily, my own health continues to lumber on without many large hiccoughs. I have my problems, but (knock on wood) I can continue to steer myself clear of needing ANY prescription drug regamines (much to my Dr's chagrin - he very much wants me to take a statin because my cholesterol level is borderline and BP meds because my BP is borderline, only to have me simply say, "no." I refuse to become a client of Big Pharma, tethered to my pharmacist & giving them blood money every month or so.) I'm good with vitamins, Tylenol for pain (with hydrocodone only for when things are SO bad,) and suppliments.

So anyway, that's what I've been up (or down) to, and now you know that you'll be seeing me more often. Don't say I didn't warn you... :D
aearwen2: (Default)
While I'm not entirely certain I'm going to leave LiveJournal, I've set up this account to mirror LiveJournal in case things go to Hell over there. If you want, please friend me over there so I can find you guys again.
aearwen2: (Sm Sindarin Lady)
I know, I know... I owe a zillion entries on the 365 meme. And I'll catch up, honest! But this just blew my mind:

Adjective Order

Click on the picture for full-sized, so it's easier to read.
aearwen2: (Sm Sindarin Lady)
Oi! I haven't been very active lately, have I?

Seems like the week just sped on past, filled with little errands that took more time than I thought they would - and before I knew it, the day was done and I hadn't even poked my head up in here. The next week promises much the same. Monday I take Hubby to blood tests and take another trip to Social Services (we won't bother to rant about how invasive their questions are.) Tuesday I spend with my new Russian friend - and I've finally figured out another pretty place along the coast to take her. Wednesday will be a "normal" day, I think... Thursday afternoon will start early with me taking my other Russian friend to yet another medical test - this time a barium swallow test. She's elderly, and I'm her "interpreter" (meaning me and Google Translate, that is...) And Thursday is when it's supposed to start raining again...

Progress report from the dam up in the hills: it's now at almost 45% capacity. This means that while we might just have enough water to get us through our "Dry" season, we still aren't completely out of the woods yet. We'll need another year or two at least before we can wipe our brows and declare our current drought "over". The good news otherwise is that other dams in the area are also filling - with one actually going over the spillway. The snow-pack in the Sierras is above normal, which means recharging the water table in the Central Valley. This has been a GOOD year for us, water-wise. Please, Mother Nature, keep up the good work!!!

In other news...

JJ has his new aquarium - the old one sprang a leak, we think... One way or the other, it was losing water WAY too fast. Anyhoo, we have the old tank out in the backyard (thinking about possibly making it into a terrarium to grow maybe some celery and/or green onions on the back porch in it) and the new tank in its place. Tomorrow we'll add the water & chemicals and get the filters running, and then let it go for a few days and take the water for testing before putting the two survivors of the last tank back into the newer, bigger home. JJ will be doing the running back and forth when it comes to filling the tanks, I swear. It's his aquarium, after all; he needs to be doing the work. :-p

And now, without further ado, I have eight days' worth of 365 Meme to catch up on, so bear with me. Gonna put it behind a cut, so as not to take up so much screen-space (and/or for those who aren't interested...)

365 Day Meme Entries under the cut )

See y'all next time...
aearwen2: (Sm Sindarin Lady)
Yesterday was not quite but almost a lost day. I wanted to get my fasting blood test done right away - but a trip to the kitchen while still half-asleep netted me a quick drink of cranberry juice at 4:45AM, which blew that out of the water. I still went to the lab tho - Hubby needed to get his bloodwork done. Then later, went shopping and generally tinkered with IDD Chapter 24 and hung out on Facebook. Crashed into bed early.

Today was Saturday, and my normal 8AM appointment with friends for coffee and conversation. Have decided I need to learn how to filter Facebook to take out all of the political crud mentioning, ridiculing or otherwise discussing our current federal leadership. I do spend time reading a couple of news sites, and I do so at length, so it isn't as if I don't know what's going on - but I'm tired of going to FB to relax and coming away depressed and half-angry. That's a good part of the reason I love coming here!!! There is so little of that, and it's SOOOOOOO refreshing!!!

Okay... On with the meme. Today's a catch-up day, with two prompts:

34: Where you’d like to be in ten years.

I'm at the age that, ten years from now, I'd like to be alive and well and still functional. Maybe even still writing either fanfic or O-fic. I want to still live in the same house I'm in now, in the same area I live now - hopefully with no water shortage issues.

35: Your views on drugs and alcohol.

When it comes to alcohol, I'm not a teetotaller, but I do believe in imbibing with moderation - and seeking help if one has trouble knowing when to stop.

I also am a proponent of legalized marijuana, and of doing the research into medical cannabis' potentials. I make and use my own cannabis ointment for topical use to help with the arthritis pain. I do NOT believe marijuana to be a "gateway drug" anymore than I believe it about alcohol. I believe the research demonstrates that marijuana is far less physically addictive than either alcohol or many other so-called "legal" substances.

My views on drugs, however, are a different story.

I have lived my life - and taught my kids - that "Drugs are for sick people only." In other words, if you haven't got a physical condition that demands that pill, you shouldn't be taking it. That said, I recognize that there are a lot of facets to drug addiction other than poor self-control. I have friends who are part of the 12-Step programs available, and seen the good they can do. I believe that rehab should be the recourse given to those convicted of drug crimes (along with any restitution that should realistically fall to them) and not prison time (unless the crime committed was one that included violence.) Prison doesn't make the problem better or go away; it often exacerbates some of the other issues of which the drug use is only a symptom.

I think that the way the pharmaceutical industry has flooded the airwaves with commercials for pills to cure just about anything that ails us - with a zillion and one side-effects that will, in turn, require even more pills - are a major contributor to the problem at hand, and I would like to see ALL advertisement of prescription medications banned, period, end of statement (except in publications aimed at medical professionals who would know what the heck they're about.) I advocate self-education in the many naturopathic remedies, and use of the same up to or until one finds them inadequate - and only then consider artificial (as in man-concocted) remedies.

More than you wanted to know, right?

Okay. Until tomorrow, folks. Have a nice rest of the weekend.
aearwen2: (Sm Sindarin Lady)
Well, today started out very suddenly, when my Russian friend Nina called me to remind me I was taking her to an ear, nose & throat specialist appointment. Luckily, she called in time for me to hurry up, get dressed and out the door and over to her house in good time to get her there ON time. Spent most of the rest of the day with her, ending on a political discussion of American politics. We both agree that Тромп сумошедший!! (Trump's crazy!) This is a change for her, because she thought he might do better coming from a business standpoint. Then again, she thought all the candidates were lacking, and so simply didn't vote - even though I tried to interest her in participating in the propositions on the CA ballot. We have playfully argued the pros and cons of marijuana legalization many times...

It rained a bit again today - mostly in the early morning hours. When last I checked, our reservoir lake sits at 34.8% full, and the graph line measuring content continues to inkle upwards. This is a good thing, because we get none of the lovely snowfall run-off from the Sierras - so this is all stuff that actually fell as rain on our now-green hills. I think I will be satisfied if we can top 45% this year, and I'll be even happier if next year's precipitation brings us a lot closer to full. It was a "One Hundred-Year Storm" back in 1969 that filled that lake from empty to overflowing the very year the dam was finished, thus preventing one heckuva flood here. Don't want that kind of rain again - just the steady up-tick in the lake levels...

Okay. Enough of that. Today's meme prompt is:

33: Your relationship status and how you feel about it.

I am married. I am happily married. I feel very lucky that I found a man that is kind and gentle and a good father and provider, who loves me as much (I hope) as I love him. And I think that's about as much schmaltz as I want to drizzle into this little entry. I'm happy, I guess is the best answer to "how do I feel about it."

Until tomorrow, F-List friends.

April 2019

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