The Lake So Deep

I feel deserted, no one is there

Getting used to having no one care

No one knows the depth of my fear

Maybe that’s why they don’t come near

Ý

I used to drive them all away

Know there’s nothing I can say

See me here in deep despair

Has me pulling out my hair

Ȳ

They all laugh as though they see

The misery deep inside of me

It’s getting to be easier to take

No longer crying to fill a lake

Ȳ

That lake, I know it is quite deep

And there is where my secrets keep

The way he came, caused me fear

Every time I felt him near

Ȳ

⊗ van ⊗

These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things

My answers to some of the questions from Cee’s Share Your World

  1. Fond childhood places?  My childhood places that I liked the most, were the woods up behind our house, and the caves we would dig in the snowbanks around the driveway.
  2. Thing(s) you are most proud of?  I think what I am most proud of was going back to school at the age of 28, and getting my degree five years later.
  3. Have you been through any official rites of passage?   My one and only official rite of passage, I believe, was when I was baptized in early 2008.    Another was when I was sworn into the US Military. How about unofficial?  I cannot think of any unofficial ones.  My life has been pretty boring, I guess.
  4. What is your role in your family?  I am the oldest of three children, the only girl.  I was also the one to get into more trouble than my brothers.
  5. Define family.  I believe family is not what I was born into, but rather those around me, who love me and share life with me.
  6. Do you get on with your siblings?  One of my brothers, I have not heard from since the day after our mother’s funeral.  That was more than four years ago.  I am in contact with my youngest brother and text with his wife.  Our plan, is for me to move in with them in Texas, when the MS has gotten to a point where I can no longer live by myself.  The only problem with that, is that I’m heat sensitive, and it can get pretty darn warm in Texas during the summer.
  7. What small things have you seen or taken note of today?  I noticed the spaghetti sauce that had run down the front of my cabinet beneath the microwave.  I had a small disaster incident last night while trying to put my ravioli into the microwave to heat the sauce.  Due to my wonderful lack of coordination, there were ravioli here and ravioli there, and on the floor, with sauce everywhere from here to next week.
  8. What makes you happy?  Being out in (is that an oxymoron?) the spring and fall weather, with a breeze blowing and the leaves rustling.
  9. Do you have good self-control?  It depends on the situation.  If I feel I’m being treated inappropriately, or that no one is listening to me, then no, I don’t.  I can’t seem to keep my mouth closed and my opinions to myself.  But I have good self-control when it comes to not picking up that first drink (I am an alcoholic, sober 17 years now.), and when I’m trying to teach someone something, I have good self-control.
  10. Are you good at making decisions?  I am good at making bad decisions . . . and then when I do make good decisions, I’m always second guessing myself.
  11. How often do you cry?  I rarely cry.  The one thing that will make me cry is when I get extremely angry, usually over something I have no control over.
  12. Have you ever had any altercations with the police?  I think there have been three, maybe four.  There were three, due to my drinking and driving, resulting in spending the night in jail.  The other was when I sideswiped a police car that was sitting in the middle of a 4-lane road, right on the yellow line.
  13. How do your relieve stress?  Sitting down with my laptop, and playing Sudoku until I reach the point where I can’t make any sense of the puzzle.
  14. What did you once love, but now hate?
  15. Is doing nothing a waste of time?  Not at all.  Sometimes I need to just sit here, and fall asleep in my recliner with the cat asleep in my lap.
  16. What is cluttering your life?  All the stuff I have in my apartment, that doesn’t have a permanent home.  I like the living room tables, and the dining table to be completely cleared off except for lamps, the phone, and the wooden napkin holder in the center of my dining table.
  17. How do you help people, in small ways, in large ways, however?  I help people by carefully explaining or even showing them how to do something which is confusing them to no end.
  18. When’s the last time you did something nice for a stranger?  Being a single woman, in a wheelchair, I try to avoid strangers.  But when waiting in line at the grocery store, letting someone in line ahead of me because I have a lot of time to do nothing anyway.
  19. Who inspires you the most?  I think the person who inspires me the most is the pastor of my church.  He does not go up to a pulpit, and preach at us, but stands in front of us, teaching us about the Bible.
  20. Do Apps help or waste your time?  I think, for the most part, Apps waste my time.  Usually when I get caught up in an app and can’t stop, and put it to the side.
  21. Does Facebook make you feel bad?  I enjoy Facebook.  It gives me the opportunity to showcase some of my photography, serves as a place where people have access to my writing.
  22. What music are you listening to right now?  Absolutely nothing.  Except for the cat complaining in the background, and the leaves blowing around outside my open window, it is quiet in here.  If I do listen to music, it would be Contemporary Christian of music from the 60’s and 70’s.

Halloween? Or Birthday?

Image result for jack o lanternEnded up just another day
I knew that it would be that way
A card from here, a card from there
Getting so I no longer care

Before that day came to pass
Get out the wine, fill my glass
Wait, there is no wine here
The past would rise again, I fear

Image result for halloween birthday cakeThere was no one to bake a cake
And my heart began to ache
For all those years, so much fun
Now, I have no way to run

Away from those days long past
I knew that it would not last
The years when that day would near
Monster faces would appear

The monsters look different now,
Changed some way, I don’t know how,
Faces leering, both day and night
I know that things are not all right

I write to see how I feel
It is really no big deal
Very few come to my door
I thought that I would care no more

I was wrong.

Photo credits: Google Images

Weekend Coffee Share

Image result for CoffeeIf we were having coffee, I’d tell you that the weather here along Lake Michigan has been the usual autumn type – cold and raining, cold but with some sun, and even a day that was pretty nice.  I’d tell you that the weather keeps me homebound from here on out, due to my intolerance of cold/hot weather.  I need a happy medium or the MS symptoms come raging flare up on me causing a never-ending pile of symptoms, from numbness and tingling, to vision problems (more than I already have), and a list of other things, too lengthy to mention.

Image result for Coffee

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that tomorrow’s birthday comes with a variety of feelings.  I still get that excited child, who loves birthday parties and trick-or-treating, feeling, which makes me excited, despite my aging body.  These days, there is a birthday cake, if I bake it myself.  I don’t get a lot of that trick-or-treating excitement, because these days, the kids go trick-or-treating on Sunday afternoon, in the light, with barely a costume much more than a painted face.  I’d tell you how ages years ago, we went trick-or-treating on Halloween night (after that birthday party), without the fear of being preyed upon.  I’d tell you how we lived out in the boonies in the country, so my mother had to pile the three of us kids, plus any left-over party kids, and she would drive us from house to house, as the houses could be as much as half a mile apart.  I’d tell you how when I was in elementary school, all the kids were dressed up, and in the afternoon we would parade down through the town, and back again, with parents lining both sides of the road (we didn’t have streets).  Also, my mother would bake her famous chocolate frosted drops (a delicious chocolate cookie, with a topping of chocolate, and she would bring them to my class so that we could have that treat, before we paraded down into the town and back.  All the teachers wanted her recipe.  I tried to make them once and it was a horrible disaster.  Now, baking cookies from a wheelchair is just too messy and too much work for the clean-up afterwards.

Image result for CoffeeIf we were having coffee, I’d tell you how the next few days I get depressed, because that excited birthday response, is a big lead-up to a huge downfall, when my birthday is over the depression comes a calling, because that excitement I had as a child, and still feel as a post-middle-aged woman, always rushes in, because at best, the only real family I have anymore is two brothers and their wives, and the sons of my youngest brother’s wife.  Then there is my other brother and his wife, along with a host of 13 cousins, many second-cousins, and even third-cousins, whom are growing up fast faster than I am growing old.  My other brother never calls, emails or texts me, even when I initiate the contact between us.  I’d tell you that the name ‘Van Benschoten’ in my branch of the family tree, will end when the three of us are gone, because they had no children of their own, as well as myself, who has never even been married – not to say that means I couldn’t have children, being unmarried, but vowed long ago that I would not have children because I knew I would most likely treat them the same way I was treated, and I don’t want to put that on the shoulders of my children.  I would also tell you that a host of cousins, second and third cousins, will wish me a happy birthday on Facebook, and that makes me feel warm inside.  Have a great week and I’ll have you over for coffee again next week!

Go Play – Obstacle Course – On Wheels!

Being a wheelchair user can have its ups and downs.  One of the ups is playing games in a wheelchair.  For some events (like last weeks Pickleball) I can use either my power wheelchair or my power.  There is an event called the Slolam, and basically it’s an obstacle course, both for  manual chairs and power chairs.

My first Slalom was done in a hospital-issue wheelchair.  I had to open, go through, and close doors, without knocking any little plastic pylons, and the course is done following a path from one obstacle to the next.  It took me more than 10 minutes to get through that challenge.  The second, and last time through a manual course, I was using a sports chair that was designed to fit me.  I got through the course in just over 3 minutes.

I  have done a lot of sports in a wheelchair but this one is the most challenging, I think.  I have played slow-pitch softball,  9-ball (billiards with only balls 1-9, shooting at the  balls in order), shot an air gun at targets, archery, bowling, track & field, and other things which I can’t think of now.

This autumn, I decided I would do the power course, laid out for differently, according to the athlete’s ability.  There are three quad courses, and I’ve done several of them.  This year, I was reclassified, and thus compete with people in a class that’s more competitive than the one that I did before.

The time was finally right, I put on my helmet (required), and I went through that course.  It may be a little different from the obstacle course most people think of when they hear, “obstacle course.”

Weekend Coffee Share

Image result for CoffeeIf we were having coffee, I’d tell you that I’ve been feeling rushed, though I had no obligations during the week.  I’d tell you that time is just rushing toward the end of the month (8 days, not counting today), and for me another birthday.  I don’t know why they seem to be coming faster and faster, and the numbers just are rushing up that ladder, to meet my maker and account for myself in front of Him.  I’d also tell you not to worry, I do accept that fact, but I don’t plan on going up that ladder this soon. It does seem that I won’t be able to define myself as ‘middle-aged’ for much longer, but will be progressing into the ‘senior’ category.  But I worry not.  I’ll try to graciously let the man hold the door open, so that I can get my chair in without it getting schmooshed.  (Spellcheck is trying to tell me that is not the correct spelling, but it’s not offering me any other word).  I did get schmooshed one day, when I was headed in for a cup of coffee.  I wanted to report it to the manager, but he conveniently was absent, but would be given the message when he returned.  And guess what!  He never called me back, even though I called them over and over again.  Side note here, while I was writing the part about McDonald’s’ doors, a McDonald’s ad started on Pandora.  I didn’t pay it much attention, and they weren’t advertising their coffee.

Image result for CoffeeIf we were having coffee, I’d tell you that I only have a week left, before that birthday (hush, don’t say it aloud) arrives.  I’d tell you there is a funny little blurb surrounding that day, because I was born two months early – on Halloween day, smack dab in the middle of the day.  It was convenient for my dad, because that year Halloween fell on a Saturday, so he didn’t miss too much work due to  my birth.  I would tell you that I didn’t lag behind with growth, though I did have to spend my first week on earth, in an incubator.  I’d tell you how before 1960, they used pure oxygen in incubators, and a fair amount of babies grew up blind.  I am fortunate in that I wasn’t in there very long, so the damage to my eyes is minimal, but visible to the opthamologist when he dilates my eyes.  One year, the eye doctor asked how premature I had been when born.  He could see damage to blood vessels in the back of my eyes.  I have been wearing glasses since I was 7.  I would tell you that I tried contacts during the early 1990’s, but due to astigmatism, I had to wear rigid, gas permeable contacts, and even then I had a difficult time removing them because they would form a suction to my eyes.  After a year or so, I gave up.  Now I’m too old to worry about vanity.  In fact, I’m wearing no-line trifocals, with a pair of (purple) reading glasses nearby.  I’m wearing a dark, pink pair of glasses, but I’m due to go to the Opthamalogist (apparently I’m never going to be able to spell that without the help of a dictionary (Wait.  Does anyone actually use those big, old books anymore?  Do I even own one?)  We would laugh about that for a bit.

Image result for CoffeeIf we were having coffee,  I would tell you that the coming week is also be difficult due to the fact that my depression will be triggered by the end of the math, as it was at the beginning of the month on the 1st, because my mother passed away four years ago that day.  I’d tell you that becoming depressed over that doesn’t really make any sense, because my mother was one of my abusers, during childhood, and even so as an adult.  I’d tell you that there is a good side to all of this.  A few years after my father died in 2004, my mother met, and moved in with another man, though they never married.  I call him my step-dad, even though my mother is gone.  He is about the only person that calls me, to just hear me and know that I am ok.  Neither of my brothers call me, but the youngest one still is in touch, as is his wife, who texts me any old time (a couple of weeks ago, while I was leading Bible study, a minion started laughing and telling me that I had a text message and it was my sister-in-law.  I will try to keep busy and upbeat (?!) this week, and not thinking too much about my birthday throughout the week.  I would also tell you to have a good week.

I Played Wheelchair Pickleball

Let’s go play Pickleball!

While at the Valor Games Midwest, in Chicago, I saw pickleball played for the first time, at Soldier Field.  I did not know that we were being taped while we played, and did some drills.  I did not know I was in this video, but stumbled across it when looking up wheelchair pickleball.

I am the Caucasian woman with dark and grey hair, in a blue shirt.  It shows me doing drills, and actually on the court, playing.

Weekend Coffee Share

Image result for coffee mugIf we were having coffee, I would tell you about that squirrel.  During the week, I would look up from my laptop and see a squirrel on my windowsill.  I spotted it about the Image result for Catsame time as did my cat.  I am so glad the window has been closed throughout the week, due to the drop in temperature that we had.  I’d tell you how that squirrel causes my cat to come running from, I don’t even know where, race through the room and up in the Image result for squirrelwindow.  An occasional bird also causes that reaction from her.  I am always afraid that she is going to go right the window screen, and out on the ground. Fortunately, not that the temperature is cooler, the window has been closed, and I can stop worrying about the screen popping out, right along with the cat.  That squirrel has also left a little pile, of what I first thought was dirt, but appears to have shell pieces and other whatnot in it.  It looks like just a pile of dirt.

Image result for coffeeIf we were having coffee, I’d tell you that I have finally started going back to church.  Last night was the second week in a row, and I have been asked to do an additional bit of work for the church.  I now run the Power Point presentation, which contains the words to the worship songs, so there is no need for hymnals in the backs of the pews.  This is a good thing, since we don’t have pews, but just rows of chairs on a gym floor.  I’d tell you how I started going to this church just one month later, from it’s beginnings in a rental arrangement with Image result for chairsanother church.  Since those early beginnings, we have moved three times, in eight years.  We moved from one church building to another, and that place became too small, due to the growth in numbers of churchgoers.  I’d tell you how we moved to a new location, with a larger sanctuary and adequate space for growth.  Unfortunately, due to the passing of the pastor at that location, the bills didn’t get paid and the church was closed after the electricity was cut off.  The first week after that happened, we didn’t have a church service, because we had no place to meet.  Then came another location, with rows of chairs on a gym floor, and that is where we have been since then.

Image result for paper coffee cupIf we were having coffee, I’d tell you how this church is not like the church your grandma went to.  The pastor, who has a beard which has grown to mid-chest level, and long hair, which is tied back in a pony tail.  He comes in wearing any shirt, possibly the one that he has worn all day, a pair of baggy blue jeans, and a leather vest, covered with pins and patches on the front, and the church logo on the back.  I’d tell you that if you were not a regular churchgoer, you would be surprised and feel comfortable there.  We are a biker church.  The church tagline is, “You don’t Image result for bikershave to ride to come inside!”  We don’t sing regular, but instead sing contemporary Christian songs, as well as some well-remembered songs from the 70’s and 80’s, which have had some of the words changed, to make it a song we would sing in church, as well as take home with you, in your head.  I would tell you that the pastor does not preach from the Bible, but rather teaches us about what the Bible has to say.  There is a mixture of messages, some or most of which often causes laughter.  I would tell you how, if you didn’t go to church (something I did throughout the entire summer), but wanted to know a little more about church,  if you came and listened to my pastor give his message, you are quite likely to come back again.  We are jeans and leather friendly, but you can wear most anything you feel comfortable in, as long as you are actually wearing clothes.  I would tell you that the way he gives his sermon, you learn about what is written in the Bible, as well as how it applies to us, even today, and have a website which I (as the church’s Webmaster), have revised, and then re-designed, and is chock-full of information about our church.  I would tell you that I’m going to do yet more redesigning of our church website, making it suitable not only for your computer, but also your tablet and even your phone.  I am going to be working on that project this afternoon, and hopefully will get it all working the way we all would like.

Site Name Change

To all my followers, likers and commenters:  I reversed the order of the site name and tagline.  It seems to be more appropriate for the site.  After all, who types my last name into Google when looking for a topic to read about?

I hope I haven’t  confused anyone.  If I do, my bad!

The address for the site has not changed.