Friday, September 30, 2016

today

Happy Friday.

It's thundering. The type of thunder that is so continuous we're not sure if they're blasting down the road again or if it's the weather.
It's raining. A torrential downpour, then just a soft, steady rain.
And I'm sick. Again. I don't know if it's allergies like before, or a cold, or what. And I don't care. I just want it to stop. I'm thankful it's now, the one week I have off before my schedule picks back up, and hoping it's cleared up before my next class next week. I'm not sure if they'd tell me to go home or not if I show up with a bass voice and watery eyes.
Like the last umpteen years, my temp has dropped well below normal. I have the routine conversation "well, maybe your baseline temp is below average" with people like my husband and nurse and dr (and for the record, it's not). If I were to go to the dr today, which I won't, the nurse would stick the thermometer back in my mouth and say "Well, it's clearly not had enough time." and when she takes it back out a few minutes later will just shrug. After all, who runs a fever of 96.6? I think I can count on one hand the times in the last 20 years I've felt bad or feverish, checked my temp and found it above normal instead of below (shingles, bronichal infection, and a flu-like virus). Otherwise, if I feel bad, I can almost guarantee you that my temp will be below 98.4
So we're not heading to the mountains for a day or two, we're not going to the bluegrass festival in downtown Raleigh tonight, and I'm not even quilting. But I'm up, and that's a huge improvement over yesterday.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

taste buds

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Dr. Pepper is the drink of choice for many people in Alabama. In college, I tried drinking coffee for a week. I was totally miserable.  Every morning, I tried a different suggestion from someone how to make it drinkable. None of them worked. By Saturday, I decided there was sweet tea, milk, hot chocolate and Dr. Pepper available. Who needed coffee?  So imagine my surprise when I discovered that my non-coffee drinking husband also dislikes Dr. Pepper. WHAT? We both dislike coffee!! How could he not savor a Dr. Pepper? He claims it tastes like medicine.

A few years ago I wound up with a cherry coke. How, I don't know. Bear in mind, I don't like cherries. My husband does. Being the loving and gracious person that he is, he said if I didn't like it he would trade with me. (He normally drinks water and avoids soft drinks like the plague.) But once I tried it, I found it was very similar to Dr. Pepper. I had him try it, and he totally agreed (which meant he didn't like it).

So how is it that the drink I like the most has a cherry flavor to it...the fruit I hate the most? Bobby laughs and says I should try cherries again as my taste buds I have obviously changed. I have tried them, and while they're not as detestable as I remember from my childhood, they're not something I desire to put in my mouth.

But it is nice to know when I walk into a store or restaurant that doesn't sell Dr. Pepper, if they have cherry flavored Coke or Pepsi, it's almost as good. Almost.


Wednesday, September 28, 2016

perspectives

A few years ago after a Bible study a lot of the group continued to sit and talk and simply relax. One of the ladies felt like she was being mistreated by her boss. She was always given extra tasks or asked to assume responsibilities that no one else was asked to do. She felt it was unfair. As she was listing off some of the extras (she worked in a cafe for a plant), I was in flashback mode. My last year of college I was a shift manager at a fast food place. One of my many duties was to ensure that certain cleaning jobs (extra duties) was assigned and done properly. We were inspected by company headquarters once a quarter, and 3 of their 4 visits was ALWAYS a surprise visit. When I handed out those extra assignments, I had three things in mind: Who will do this job without making a bigger mess? Who can quickly do this job so we don't impede serving customers? Who will do this without the most drama? In essence, I wanted the best person for the job. Use the teenager who griped and complained about every single thing so the whole crew had to hear even more whining and griping? I had a hard enough time working with her on a normal night. Have the kid who trips over his own two feet and drops half of what he touches climb overhead and dust the bins where we stored the stacks of plastic wrapped caps while on a ladder? No, don't feel like having extra paperwork and a trip to the ER tonight. So who was I going to ask for help? One of my better workers. The ones who do their jobs right the first time, without complaining. Preferably the ones I don't have to constantly check on to make sure they're not goofing off. And it never once crossed my mind that the worker would feel like they were being picked on. I was simply thinking about inspections and who could do the best job. We had a job that needed to be done, and I chose the people who could do it the most efficiently. It never once crossed my mind that someone would feel targeted or picked on.

I was reminded of that last night as I was reading my niece's blog. She was sharing some very personal thoughts and feelings, and one of the things she included was a time when she and her sister both tried out for a play, and she was chosen to be a paper mache ham that danced while her sister took the main role. And prior to that section, I was feeling absolutely HORRIBLE at some of the things I read. But the play...it made me laugh. If I had to pick a cast of background people for a play  I would look for people who could follow directions, not steal the spotlight but do such an incredible job in a small role that everyone would be talking about it later - and she has both of those qualities. If she's not enthusiastic about something, she simply doesn't do it. She has always been an all the way or nothing person, even as a toddler. She's extremely smart and seldom has to be told more than once how something needs to be done. She looks at an average scenario and has all these creative ideas for how to make it spectacular. Her energy level as a child often left me totally drained. And if I needed a dancing anything...she has the grace to make it look good and fun. She is/was the one you could stick at any position in a play and not worry about whether or not she'd learn her lines or give it all she had. So from a teacher's perspective...she would have made an incredible backstage character.

And it's gotten me to thinking about all those times I've been tired and struggling just to focus on an overwhelming to do list and someone has asked me or reminded me to do something for them. I may not actually physically scream "Can't you see I'm already overwhelmed and stressed out without you piling more on me?!?!" but I'm sure my attitude or expressions convey it. And yet, I'm being asked not because the person is trying to overwhelm me, but because it needs to be done and they think/know I can handle it. And in two weeks as I step back into 17 days of assigning responsibilities and placing people in jobs they may not prefer, I hope I remember to take an extra moment to let them know how much I appreciate their abilities and work. We all need that edification.