During another sleepless night I found myself downstairs at my laptop grabbing a load of email. Among them was a sad and shocking one, my first husband, John Charles Penney died.
We got married in the most lovely "Herbfarm" over near Snoqualmie and the infamous "Gilman Village". I was just showing Kim some photos the other day of the wedding as we were working the closet.
Since our divorce /separation, we were in touch enough for me to know that every once in a while I'd get a note or call, email or snail mail, a postcard or birthday card, or xmas note, even a photo or two ... fairly regularly. I'd always get an update and hear from him sporadically.
The last one I received was John sending me a note, with some personal items of moments we shared like when we were at St George Utah prior to our wedding. He had told me before this missive full o' goodies, that he had prostate cancer and was "on the clock", but beyond the initial shock, it never truly kicked in as a truth for me.
John was instrumental, on so many levels, in who, how and where I am today.
But for John, I would not have been here in the GNL [great north left], and my life would have been so very different - only a parallel universe knows if my lot would have been better or worse. So many forks in the proverbial road(s) not taken - or more specifically, the roads I took.
I'll have to scrounge up a snap of John to share. He was a force of personality and nature, and I will not go into more detail than that -- but let's say that he was a "person who had latent anthropology tendencies" .
I can tell you that I was proud that I was THE person who finally had John open a credit card at J C Penney's !!! That was a hoot. The person opening it got a tad nervous - go figure .
I also recall that during our first meetings, John would not look me in the eyes, well, truth be known, no one in the eyes, and after I later "called him on that" he made a conscious effort to correct it. He did it, that's John's strength of will. John was a good businessman, and a strong person with street smarts. He hails from Everett MA, and his ancients from Newfoundland. Internally, John was full of contradictions, and I'm a "faux-therapist who also likes to make things better", so using 20/20 hindsight, it is so not surprising that we got together. [Another good moment we had is on Blewitt Pass in WA.]
We lived on English Hill in Redmond WA. I loved that house - he and I fixed it up so it was lovely and homey. We had "two cats in the yard"...as the song goes, and a fence that Cassie would walk to hunt down squirrels. John honestly loved the kitties, pure unconditional love. He even grabbed the ladder one dusky evening and climbed up to get our "stuck on the roof" kitty [those cats were never stuck , only in our own minds].
Cassie and Yoko were kitties that found me via John Painter, formerly of New Hampshire, who had kittens en route from NH to WA. He was a "DEC consultant" that seemed to have a pretty stable job even during lay-offs. One day, posted on John Painter's cubicle, there were poloroids of his "free kittens" [there are NO free kittens LOL], and people at DECWest (lovingly known as DECWet) put their names under the snap of the kits they wanted. I chose one of Cassie's sisters at first, but when I saw Miss C(K)iss, I knew she was the one, and then, Miss Yoko did the cutest thing...she crawled up my sleeve at the wrist end, and, the rest as they say, is history. This was the beginning of my having "multiple kitties" in my life! They were amazing girls. Very brilliant and clever girls. Both of them knew Zach and took him in PDQ! I miss them so.
As I get older, and more in pain, hence more "static", when someone leaves this planet, So much of my life exits, along with the shared memories, with them.
I do recall, fun times with JCP along with sadness, such as the night that John was "sawing wood", and the then little kitten, Cassie, put her head in his mouth to check it out further -- LOL, that was a very good moment for us, some unbridled, unchecked, laughter.
He was a strong strong presence on this planet, and in my life, and yet in many ways had so far to grow. John did "carpe diem" but when we started to date, some of the emphasis changed, I'd like to think for the "better", for him, his growth and goals.
Did I mention he was my boss at DECWest? LOL. Truly, beware internal dating, and you should never date the boss - that's my .02 fer free on that one.
John, you left a big ol' black hole in the universe when you "passed" this past Wednesday, October 17th. I miss you, but I guess you know that having been a student? nay, master of the human psyche, eh?
12:00 AM - link -
Wednesday October 10 2007
A teeny tiny bit of catching up.
Gordy left a perfect message, if a message like this is ever good. Thank you Gordy [he learned from the last trip to CPT when he didn't warn me, and I rec'd a call from WSH re: Mom]. They phoned, and there was a "substitute" MD who thought Mom was having a heart attack as she was pointing to her sternum /esophogus area saying "I hurt".
The did the correct things by phoning Gordy and also giving Mom and EKG and took her blood. It showed that her heart was strong. Gordy was so very smart by wisely asking, "What did Gerry do to indicate she may be having a heart attack?". They replied about her words and gestures. It rang a bell in Gordy's head, as it did in mine when I rec'd Gordy's phone message, that as she was losing her ability to speak, she would point to the heart area, and move her hand up and down, saying that it hurt there -- and it was always depression, severe depression.
Gordy left me the number on the message, so I phoned WSH and spoke to Trish who said the heart was strong, and she heard me when I mentioned what that series of words and motions meant. She will pass it on to Chuck Harris, her psychiatrist. Trish said they were all very worried about Mom, hey all love her and think she's great [even when she's bossy and ornery etc...her love of life and sense of humor come through -- my Mom is amazing!].
So after hanging up, and shedding a few tears of relief, I phoned Gordy to tell him what they said, and to thank him for the message he left, and how he left it. Whatta guy, eh?
Anyhooo, today I took my therapist out to lunch; we had an adventure--sort of a food gift of the magi fiasco. She hunted down a veggie place, and I wanted to take her to a nice place and it was in that category. We went, we ate, we are not going again!!!
I love Mary, she's an amazing woman, and an amazing healer. I hope we stay in touch beyond tomorrow's last day of treatment. One day left to perform a miracle. It could happen, right? I head home on Friday, I took that extra time to get my ducks in a row, like pack, drop off the car and get to the airport.
20/20 hindsight, I should have left Thursday eve to get home all the more quickly -- but then ferry catching would be dicey at best.
So, here's a picture of Mary, my healer here in Irvine CA:
If you can believe it, her inner self is even more beautiful than the outer manifestation...
09:04 PM - link -
It's no wonder I'm afraid of this upoming trip.
It starts on a personal level. I am afraid to leave home so soon, and to leave my kitties. Zach has a history of IBS, and he knows something is "up", and Livvie has amped up her growling to even growl at Zach, Gordy and myself, and then there's our newest love. I'm smitten! On the plus side, Kim will be here to care for them until Gordy comes back, and then in a long week, I'll be home.
But I miss them in my heart.
Also, the first time that Annette from WSH asked for something for Mom, I had to mail it instead of bring it (her own white keds) - I let Mom down.
Then there's the fact that I saw 2 episode of "The Ghost Whisperer" where there is a plane crash, then there was my breaking a mirror last night, and finally, today, Alaska (my airline) had a cell phone that was left there, and it shut down SeaTac and flights were late by ~12 minutes.
Is it an omen? The universe talking to me?
Then I had a huge "episode" scant moments ago, I truly had an old type of "anxiety attack" that brings me to me knees...argh!
Now, I'm looking through my mail, and the universe has gone insane.
Old news, Bush has the cojones to veto SCHIP insurance for children, because he says no one wants government in their health, it should be privatized [i.e. the uninsured kids are still uninsured, broke is broke, and Bush wants insurance to flourish - bizness as usual].
And I just read an article online:Secret U.S. Endorsement of Severe Interrogations
Link here for the video and here for the article
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By SCOTT SHANE, DAVID JOHNSTON and JAMES RISEN
Published: October 4, 2007
WASHINGTON, Oct. 3 — When the Justice Department publicly declared torture “abhorrent” in a legal opinion in December 2004, the Bush administration appeared to have abandoned its assertion of nearly unlimited presidential authority to order brutal interrogations.
But soon after Alberto R. Gonzales’s arrival as attorney general in February 2005, the Justice Department issued another opinion, this one in secret. It was a very different document, according to officials briefed on it, an expansive endorsement of the harshest interrogation techniques ever used by the Central Intelligence Agency.
The new opinion, the officials said, for the first time provided explicit authorization to barrage terror suspects with a combination of painful physical and psychological tactics, including head-slapping, simulated drowning and frigid temperatures.
Mr. Gonzales approved the legal memorandum on “combined effects” over the objections of James B. Comey, the deputy attorney general, who was leaving his job after bruising clashes with the White House. Disagreeing with what he viewed as the opinion’s overreaching legal reasoning, Mr. Comey told colleagues at the department that they would all be “ashamed” when the world eventually learned of it.
Later that year, as Congress moved toward outlawing “cruel, inhuman and degrading” treatment, the Justice Department issued another secret opinion, one most lawmakers did not know existed, current and former officials said. The Justice Department document declared that none of the C.I.A. interrogation methods violated that standard.
The classified opinions, never previously disclosed, are a hidden legacy of President Bush’s second term and Mr. Gonzales’s tenure at the Justice Department, where he moved quickly to align it with the White House after a 2004 rebellion by staff lawyers that had thrown policies on surveillance and detention into turmoil.
Congress and the Supreme Court have intervened repeatedly in the last two years to impose limits on interrogations, and the administration has responded as a policy matter by dropping the most extreme techniques. But the 2005 Justice Department opinions remain in effect, and their legal conclusions have been confirmed by several more recent memorandums, officials said. They show how the White House has succeeded in preserving the broadest possible legal latitude for harsh tactics.
A White House spokesman, Tony Fratto, said Wednesday that he would not comment on any legal opinion related to interrogations.
This article is by Scott Shane, David Johnston and James Risen
A senior administration official called Mr. Bradbury’s active role in shaping legislation and speaking to Congress and the press “entirely appropriate” and consistent with past practice. The official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said Mr. Bradbury “has played a critical role in achieving greater transparency” on the legal basis for detention and surveillance programs.
Though President Bush repeatedly nominated Mr. Bradbury as the Office of Legal Counsel’s assistant attorney general, Democratic senators have blocked the nomination. Senator Durbin said the Justice Department would not turn over copies of his opinions or other evidence of Mr. Bradbury’s role in interrogation policy.
“There are fundamental questions about whether Mr. Bradbury approved interrogation methods that are clearly unacceptable,” Mr. Durbin said.
John D. Hutson, who served as the Navy’s top lawyer from 1997 to 2000, said he believed that the existence of legal opinions justifying abusive treatment is pernicious, potentially blurring the rules for Americans handling prisoners.
“I know from the military that if you tell someone they can do a little of this for the country’s good, some people will do a lot of it for the country’s better,” Mr. Hutson said. Like other military lawyers, he also fears that official American acceptance of such treatment could endanger Americans in the future.
“The problem is, once you’ve got a legal opinion that says such a technique is O.K., what happens when one of our people is captured and they do it to him? How do we protest then?” he asked.
As a member of Amnesty International, this is frightening, and the thought makes me nauseous as a human being on planet earth. How can this be happening? How can anyone who isn't out of their mind think of, let alone recommend, and finally vote for this -- they must have known this was not a "good" thing, else why keep it secret? I'm horrified and sick physically, spiritually, emotionally and psychically.
And, economically, guess what? For the first time since who knows when, our dollar is on par with Canada. This is not to say anything negative about Canada, it just is that going to Canada prior to now, has always required "buying money" so we wouldn't use our dollar and over pay. Also, one of the things our local PBS station used to do to encourage our neighbors to the north to pledge, was offering the premiums on "par". Are we going to have to say we'll refund you money soon? Egads. This can't be good, but the admin and their party still keep their heads up high and think they are doing good! How ludicrous.
Then with Mom being at WSH and my empathy with her, I'm off-kilter and it's never far from my heart, it isn't easy to suppress and repress even. It's always there, her hurt, my failing her.
The world has gone totally mad, well, more to point, my world has gone nuts. Trust issues are running high. I don't have any terra firma beneath my feet. If you read this, please send kind light please.
09:16 PM - link -
Egads, it's here already! This time tomorrow I will be in CA and in the hotel. Sunday at 7:00 AM is my first 4 hour session with Mary at Clear Passage.
I so hope that this works and I can avoid surgery due to the ministrations of CPT. Icing on the cake would be fixing the other pain as well.
And the candle on the the icing on the cake is to have no quakes while I'm there .
02:42 PM - link -
"walk this way..."
Igor [prnounced Eye-gore] from "Young Frankenstien" [pronounced Steen] --