To do or not to do…

To do or not to do…

Sometimes I can be a little bit dense and the penny really takes its time to drop. But better  late than never!

During my inpatient stay 2018, we had this really great art therapist. He was spot on all the time.

Once he said to a fellow patient: ” You are responsible for everything you DO, and for everything you DO NOT DO.”

This stuck with me. I realised I tried to get away with a lot of things, that I was very quick in finding an explaniation or an excuse. 

This has really changed, and it feels good to hold myself accountable. Sometimes I’m too good at this, because I often try to explain the behavior and mistakes of others with what I did or didn’t do.

A few days ago, I finally understood the other side of this coin. Yes, I’m responsible for everything I do or do not do. But the others are responsible for everything they do or do not do as well. This was very liberating realization. 

An example: There was a birthday in the family, I sent a text message. I could see the message had been read, but I didn’t get an answer. This would have really driven me nuts, I would have spend hours asking myself what I’d done wrong. This time I just mentally shrugged my shoulders – it was out of my hands anyway, and the other person had to decide for herself what she was doing or not doing. Handing responsibility over to those who really have to carry it.

By the way: Everything is fine, I got an response, just a few days later, and we had a nice chat. The important thing is I found a good way to deal with this situation. I will not stop holding myself accountable for my actions, but I will be mindful to bear just my part of responsibility.

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Thankful Thursday #53

Thankful Thursday #53

Thankful Thursday Blog Hop

The Thankful Thursday Blog Hop is hosted by Brian from Brian’s Home. He encourages us to say what we are thankful for today.

Today I’m thankful I met my mother yesterday. My parents have to be careful, they are at risk for COVID not just because of their age, but also because of health issues. I still want to see them of course, so I’m careful as well. So yesterday my mother came by our house, we had coffee and talked. We both enjoyed it so much and were thankful all of us are doing well at the moment. Corona really taught me to enjoy the litte things.

Have a great Thankful Thursday!

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Sam’s ear, a neverending story

Sam’s ear, a neverending story

Sam still has to take a daily dose of Prednisolone, but it’s 3,75 mg now instead of 5mg. So far, so good. The vet checks on him on a weekly basis.

For me, quality of life is want I want most for our furbabies. Sam may still have side effects from the Prednisolone, but he doesn’t mind taking three meds every day (thyroid hormone, ointment for his ears and Prednisolone). He is so trusting, just takes his meds and goes on with his day. Thats’s not a given, our first cat Micky fought with everything she had when we tried to give her much needed heart meds. At some point we just had to accept that was not the kind of life she wanted to live. We had to let her go over the Rainbow Bridge after a few weeks.  

We have not reached this point with Sam yet. But after our last appointment I’m not sure if the vet believes we will get Sam off the Prednisolone completely. Right now all I have is second-hand information, because only one person is allowed to go in the consultation room with Sam, and for the last appointments my husband talked to the vet. At the next appointment I’ll accompany Sam and ask my questions, because I want to know where we stand and where we are going. 

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Feline Friday #90| Friendly Fill-Ins

Feline Friday #90| Friendly Fill-Ins

It’s time for Feline Friday, hosted by Sandee from Comedy Plus!

I noticed Jackie became distant and withdrawn in the last weeks. After doing some thinking I realized she really didn’t get the attention she deserved because we have been focussed on Sam’s health for over a month. 

So I try to make it up to her now. I check on her more often and bring treats or just snuggle up for a few minutes. It helps that she is inside a lot due to cold weather. She really likes that, started purring more and follows us around the house for cuddling sessions. I’m glad she forgave me!

Friendly Fill-Ins

I again participate in the Friendly Fill-Ins, hosted by Four-LeggedFurballs and 15andmeowing. So here we go:

1. Why is hiring a craftsman always so expensive? These kinds of bills never cease to amaze me.

2. On holidays, I always have a second serving of pasta with garlic and olive oil. Simple, but I love it.
 
3. I’m eternally grateful for all the people and furbabies I met in life. They helped me become who I am.
 
4. ‘Tis the season for spending wonderful warm evenings at the wood burning stove. Humans and furbabies gather on the sofa and enjoy being together.
 
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Thankful Thursday #52

Thankful Thursday #52

Thankful Thursday Blog Hop

The Thankful Thursday Blog Hop is hosted by Brian from Brian’s Home. He encourages us to say what we are thankful for today.

Today I am very thankful that our furbaby Sam is feeling better again. Once more we had to deal with a very nasty case of vasculitis on one of his ears. We are used to short bouts, but this one has been going of since the last week of October. Sometimes all of us were very desperate, because nothing seemed to help.

What finally did help was Prednisolone. Sam had to take it for weeks, today we started the process to wean him off it. The side effects are noticeable, he drinks a lot and is always hungry. We hope he gets to a point where he doesn’t need the Prednisolone anymore, because the long term side effects can be bad, but only time will tell. Let’s hope for the best. We will watch it and have an appointment with the vet on Monday, then we will decide what to do next.

Have a wonderful Thankful Thursday!

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New Beginnings

New Beginnings

I have spent the last weeks contemplating if and how I will continue group therapy. It wasn’t an easy decision, therapy places are rare, and it will affect my future. 

Eventually I terminated therapy. This wasn’t a spur-of-the-moment decision, I talked it through with group and the therapist several times. There were many things to consider after all.

This process started months ago when I made a similar decision about ending OT. On one hand I’ve been in therapy for so long I almost can’t remember life without it. On the other hand I’m at a point where I am  tired of therapy and not able to take it in any more. This became very obvious when there was a longer break, and I didn’t miss a thing. In the last group meeting there was a new patient, she was so full of emotions and energy. I’m lacking both. 

I don’t think I am miraculously cured, and I’m very aware of the fact my problems won’t just disappear. But I won’t do therapy half-hearted. This doesn’t help me, and there are others who are more motivated and waiting for a therapy place.

I am very thankful for everything I learned in therapy, and for all the wonderful people who helped me. But sometimes it’s time to walk a different path. So here’s to new beginnings.

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Feline Friday #89| Friendly Fill-Ins

Feline Friday #89| Friendly Fill-Ins

It’s time for Feline Friday, hosted by Sandee from Comedy Plus!

We are not the only cat parents here, and so I often meet other cats, especially at the bus stop. All cats I see here are well taken care of and clearly used to living with humans.

This cat decided the street was a good place to lie down. Of course I disagreed, even though the cars are driving slow here. But this cat is clever, with it’s fine senses it knew a car was coming our way before I heard or saw it and walked away. What I liked about this short encounter was that the cat clearly felt at ease in my presence. It knew I wouldn’t harm or even try to touch it. I said “Hi sweetie, how are you doing?” and the cat responded by blinking slowly.

Cats are such an important part of my life, and I really wouldn’t have it any other way!

Friendly Fill-Ins

I again participate in the Friendly Fill-Ins, hosted by Four-LeggedFurballs and 15andmeowing. So here we go:

1. My sofa is too crowded when all of us want to snuggle, but we love it anyway.
2. I am willing to give up anything for my family, two- and fourlegged. But I’m sure this answer will come up often!
3. One random fact about me is that I am a back sleeper by nature, but have to sleep on my side due to back pain. But I got used to it.
4. My ability to empathize with humans and animals makes me unique.

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Thankful Thursday #51

Thankful Thursday #51

Thankful Thursday Blog Hop

The Thankful Thursday Blog Hop is hosted by Brian from Brian’s Home. He encourages us to say what we are thankful for today.

Today I’m thankful summer has made way for fall. The hot days are over and the fields have been harvested. Of course there’s a hint of melancholy in the air as well, but that adds more feeling to the last warm days. It’s not for everyone, but I try to make the best of each of the seasons. I know there will be times when the darkness will feel oppressive, but for now there’s so much to enjoy, and I’m thankful for that.

Have a great Thursday!

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Discipline

Discipline

A big challange that I want to adress next is self discipline. I really have neglected this for the last years.  

It was ok for a while not to push myself too much, because my soul had to do lots of healing. But I’m so much better now. 

But it’s easier said than done, and many parts of my life are affected. From bad eating habits and chores to keeping in touch with family and friends. If something comes up, I usually can handle it, but there’s no consistency. There are things I really stick to, like cooking or walking the dogs, but at the same time I feel unfinished tasks are building up, and that worries me. I allow myself to be easily distracted by playing games or internet surfing. 

Of course I have to be mindful of my physical and mental issues, but they are no excuse for not holding myself accountable. 

I have to admit the first steps are hard. This starts with getting up early in the morning. But I make things harder for myself by finding a million excuses not to go to bed on time. We talked about this in the last therapy session, often I am my biggest problem. Maybe I will find out why this happens.

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Group analytic psychotherapy

Group analytic psychotherapy

 

Recently I finished OT. But I continue group analytic therapy. 

OT often didn’t push me anymore, on the other hand analytic group is sometimes almost too much. I know this kind of group therapy from my inpatient treatments, but then I could talk to the staff later if I felt overwhelmed. Now, in an outpatient setting, I’m mostly on my own. Our therapist offers single sessions, but of course we have to wait for a free slot. 

I’m an empathic person, I feel the pain of the other patients. I’d like to help them instantly, but that’s not possible. All I can do is listen and help them unburdening their soul a little bit.

Analytic psychotherapy is – compared to behavioral therapy, for instance – a long process, it doesn’t work quickly. Patience is none of my virtues. I’d like to overcome my own problems NOW, but there’s no shortcut. Often I come home from therapy and feel very frustrated. 

I asked my therapist in our last individual session if it makes sense for me to continue. He said that I’m still at the beginning (I started group mid January, but soon after that came the big Corona-break), and that this kind of group therapy is expected to last for years. He thinks therapy will help me a great deal with my problems, he advised me just to go on with it and keep an open mind for everything that will come my way.

Sigh… So I’ll do my very best to meet the others tomorrow morning. Let’s hope I will get at least a little bit wiser. Slow and steady wins this race!

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