A Satisfying day in the garden…

I had a huge success today for somebody with Schizophrenia/Schizoaffective Disorder!

I worked for two hours in my garden, which is huge because I usually only work out there for a half an hour max but today with breaks I spent at least two hours.

Feels good.  But the sad part is that the more you do the more you realize you will never be done.

Yet I get a giddy feeling in my belly when I know I am going out there for the first time of the day.  My dogs lead the way.  They know!

The theme for today’s blog is overcoming obstacles, often with the help of my soulmate, my hubbie of 28 years…

Gardening is a lot like life, just when you think you have it figured out something goes right or wrong.  Never a dull moment.  And like life so rewarding at just a little or a lot (like today) of progress.  Anyone who is interested can read my list below my signature of all I did today with minor comments.

Also did yoga and walking today along with my spiritual practice.  Caught the sunset as usual.  Not happening naturally like it was before I blogged that I have been catching it.

We are not promised another day in this life.  Impermanence is another theme of this blog.  All I see right now in my garden is life and weeds.  Weeds are like the problems we have in our every day life.  We have to tackle them or they get out of control.

Daily check in~  How are we doing?

I am good, activity always puts me in good spirits.

How are you? On top of our brain health hopefully, physical, spiritual, acting as if everything is normal, etc…

Driving  two hours tomorrow to pick up my meds that would cost over a thousand dollars because my insurance sucks!!!  Now that we are at stage two in lifting regulations for businesses, the reps are once again bringing samples.  My saving grace.  Thank you Jesus!

And then picking up dinner at either Mexican or steak cuisine.  My husband is treating because I have been spoiling him.  I love to.  He is my love, my friend, my comfort, my annoyance lol, my helper, etc…

No such thing as perfect in any marriage but we have gone through so much and now are at such a good place that it just feels divine.  Thank you to St. Joseph!

Anyways, off to write some more on meditation for the May series.  Anything done with purpose can be meditative!  Even writing.

Pax

Victoria [The joy of gardening…today’s tasks]

The Inspector is my dear daughter who is my usual helper in the garden, who is sick today with tonsillitis, could only come out to inspect and give me guidance.

  • Threw away the debris, crab grass, rocks in trash
  • leveled the ground for our new sitting area in the side garden
  • Inspector gives approval and makes suggestions which I do and receive the green light to proceed
  • lay down weed block with the staples my husband separated for me obstacle number one- found the right pliers
  • obstacle number two- ran out of weed block.  Time to improvise, success
  • added small decorative bark to front area.                      It looks so nice! Outdoor chairs, umbrella (my mother’s day gift from my kids), and a kiddie pool to soak our feet in on hot days.  I am predicting that 2020 will be a nice weather year if nothing else…
  • obstacle number three ran out of bark, , solution pick up more tomorrow at Whispering Tree (isn’t that a lovely name for a nursery where I wear a mask and so do they and no lines but great plants and materials plus tools!)
  • watered and gave Vitamin B for new orange tree dedicated to the honor of Larry Byl who passed away last week, my best friend’s husband.
  • Watered new succulent hanging plant garden my Mother’s Day gift to Mary Queen of Heaven, all the saints and angels.
  • Threw out rocks/concrete around African tree
  • Threw out pile of branches and leaves that my hubbie trimmed many weeks ago.  But he raked them up and I collected them in a trash bag and took them to the trash.
  • Took many breaks in between to meditate, relax and do light yoga and eat healthy.
  • Took a moment to grieve the loss of Larry RIP
  • Blogged
  • good night

 

 

Wishing…

I wish I could help the whole world, delusion, but I can pray…

I wish people would stop calling it mental health and start calling it brain health…

I wish the pandemic would find a cure, soon…

I wish the world will still be connected once they do find a cure…

I wish, I wish, I wish.

Fighting apathy today.  Been through so many emotions this last week but not giving up.  Off to my sanctuary garden which is really coming along.  If you are interested in gardening see my blog of my May 2020 series on the benefits of gardening.  See right side bar under May series.

This pandemic has brought much good into my life.  My family is closer than ever before except when they were children but it’s different now with them being adults and having their own opinions.  It’s like a bouquet, you never know what you’re gonna get in there that may surprise you.

My garden brings me so much satisfaction, joy and peace and the fact that my kids are helping making a team effort is super awesome as well.  Dogs love it too!

My house has never been cleaner although I really need to do some deep cleaning especially the blinds and windows.  Ah next week.

Today after I garden a bit, I am taking a shower to get ready to go see my oldest son and his wife for a socially distanced barbecue at their new home which I have not seen yet.  Super excited.  We’re bringing brownies my daughter made.

What are you up to this weekend?

Pax

Victoria

The Benefits of Gardening…

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Just less than two weeks ago this area, minus the one planted lemon tree, was covered with weeds, car parts and a riding lawnmower!  My daughter weeded and I did all the raking to level it out and today added the surfboard which is on borrow.  I love to watch surfing!  My son did dig the hole for the orange tree this evening so tomorrow will plant it.

Just one example how the Corona virus is getting my gardens in shape.

Obviously today’s topic is gardening.  here is the blog I wrote last night and succeeded on most of my garden mission today.

~

Gardening!

Ah I love that word as the satisfaction that gardening can result is beyond powerful.  I often think that if I had discovered gardening before believing in God I might never had found God.  But it is in nature that I see God so I wonder if He would have spoken to me through the plants (not out loud ha ha).

To take a weed ridden piece of land or containers if you don’t have a yard and have some flowers or vegetables or even herbs and take care of them and watch them grow as you care for them is extremely rewarding.

I remember when I used to have the stamina and desire to garden all day long and then at night looking outside in the dark and shining a light on all my hard work and the beautiful plants I had planted and the lack of weeds.  Savoring the moment and getting up the next day and doing it again throughout the season.

I have several areas in my yards that need attention right now.  But the weather has been weird this year… hoping to get out there for a bit tomorrow with my daughter.  She is my awesome weeder.  I am lucky in this way.  Wait I don’t believe in luck actually.  I am fortunate to have her help anyway.   She weeds and I make everything else happen.

Here is the basic process in case you haven’t gardened before~

Weed and clean out all rocks

Break up the soil several feet deep if possible

Add amendment to the soil

Rake it in to mix with the soil

Plant away and water according to weather and the specific plants.

Add stepping stones and yard art to your liking.  I just got a metal peacock  (see pic above) with vibrant colors at the local nursery, my favorite place lately.

I have so much to do!!!!!  But got lots of time on my hands so tomorrow I’m getting dirty.

The way I know I can usually get myself out there before it gets windy or too hot or cold is to get dressed in my gardening pants, top doesn’t matter.  That sets the tone for the day.  I also say to myself, today is a gardening day on a day that I’m not going anywhere.  Tomorrow will be a gardening day!

The duties will be to finish weeding under the bench in the side garden (where my peacock resides), replace the stepping stones in a pattern I created, fertilize the lemon tree and move a bunch of green waste that my husband loaded up in the wheelbarrow, from the back to the trash can out front.

If I do more it will be to weed out front the rose garden (I have 6 rose bushes) and cut myself a rose because I lost a pound this week on WW and it is my reward.  Used to buy a bouquet but with these times… just cut one, either yellow, red or white with pink tint to it.  They smell so wonderful.  (ended up picking one of each colorJ)

I also hope my son digs the hole for the Valencia orange tree I just got which will go on the same side as the lemon tree which has produced one lemon in 2-3 years.  Finally realized I need to be fertilizing it.

Mistakes happen in gardening and much of it is trial and error according to your climate and zone, soil etc. But nature has a way of fixing things and the local nursery can be of great help to figure things out.  But expect some plants to die or not produce at all.  It happens.  Not all plants make it or thrive and others will do really well.

I happen to plant from transplants at a non-profit farm that benefits the mentally disordered in our area.  They do all the planting and gardening and sell the plants for next to nothing.  It is literally 3 long blocks form my home!  Only open on Thursdays and Saturdays though so my goal this week before Saturday is for my daughter to finish the weeding on the side garden so I can start planting some late season vegetables.

Notice a theme here.  Gardening is easier with help!!!  But I have not always had help.  I used to do all the weeding when my daughter was away for college.  Now I just wait for her.  I have some hip issues also so have to be careful with not squatting or kneeling too long.  I have a cushioned kneeling pad I picked up at the dollar store that has carried us through many seasons.  Saves the knees and pants.

Have I convinced you to start a garden yet albeit small and manageable?

Hope so!

Digging in the earth is especially rewarding even with gloves which I always wear now.  Rich soil, combined with regular watering and compost tea is my secret to happy plants.  You can make compost tea with a large bucket of water, some nylons or thin socks filled with compost in the water and let it make your rich compost tea in a week.  Let it set in a sunny area.  I need to make some.  Apply to the base of all your plants!  No miracle grow needed.  Apply tea as often as you like depending on the size of your bucket or container.

Gardening is methodical.  I take great care with all plants.  I love all life!

Of course the internet can give you way more tips than this.

The hardest part for me in gardening despite pulling weeds is getting out there so I tell myself I’m going to do it for ten minutes and see how I feel.  I usually keep going at least a half an hour but if it’s only the ten minutes that’s ok too.  The satisfaction is endless as is the work but worth it in the end.  (today was an hour!)

Pax

Victoria

p.s. Next topic in this May series is the benefits of walking!

Part 3 of my schizophrenia love journey…

So not feeling extra special when I look back at my life. Nothing heroic all very mundane but with a few moments of confusion and unexplainable happenings…

The year I received the gift of schizophrenia my world 🌎 lifted me so high on life receiving messages from above which still happens from time to time. And then the meds stopped the dialogue that was pretty constant and confusing.

But when God wants his will done in me who am I to refuse?

Today is the type of day when I will force myself to get sh$& done!

Just gonna do it because yesterday was a shitty day I don’t want to repeat!

I found out the other day I still have the gift of healing which I only use when God directs me…

So here I am still fighting each and every day I am alive. Today it’s in the garden I will work ☺️

Hoping all of you have a blessed day ❤️

Pax

Victoria

Things that stress me out…

 

and how I cope with a mental disorder.

  1. Money, although there always is some but yet wham, the unexpected or balloon payment is due like say for your taxes.  Mine are due in October.  Think of something else.  Don’t spend a dime.  Save if one can, even pennies add up to dollars.  I have definitely gotten better at saving this year.  I stopped shopping for everything on Amazon and am being more frugal about going to the store for every little item.  My husband was supposed to take over the bills because of my disorder but it hasn’t happened and never will probably.

I don’t work so I have more time to find coupons and deals when we do spend.  He makes a decent income so if I am careful I can really tuck some money away if I’m careful.

I know I am blessed.  I can’t imagine being single and having to rely on my disability income which I get $1,000 a month.

2. Sickness and getting older.  I am not as fit as I used to be but am getting back on track.  But I have been dealing for the past two weeks with a new medical problem surrounding digestive issues and am really trying to avoid going to the doctor right now because of lack of insurance (see #3) at least until October 1.

To combat this stress I try to eat healthy all the time with the occasional goodie.  I also am now exercising 4x a week on average.  I am gardening, walking and doing yoga throughout the week.  This helps my getting in better shape and also helps mental alertness and health.  Today was a rest day and all I wanted to do was to rest but I am in the middle of several projects around the house and rose garden so it was actually harder than I thought it would be to take a day off but my body needed the rest.  So back at it tomorrow!

Although this can stress me out a lot I am learning that the key to my happiness is acceptance.

Now i am much more motivated to do the healthy things that I am doing.  Which in the past it has really been problematic to just sit all day and do nothing, now I do rest in the mornings but do get busier later in the day.  So it is good that I am treating my body better because I have really been sick a lot and it has caused me to make sure I do all I can to be healthy.

I might go to the doctor this week.  We shall see how things go but this relates to #1 the money stress with doctor bills and testing they might want to do.

3.  My parents.  I accept they will not always be around but my dad is paralyzed on his left half of his body and my mom is a fighter but is still very frail yet tough as a bird!

How I combat this stress is by spending as much time with them as I can and appreciating every moment.

4.  Kids and husband.  Kids is easy to combat.  All the work I put in when they were growing up has paid off and although I might not agree with all their decisions I am very proud of the 3 of them.  Interestingly enough, my disorder did not kick in until I was 38 and I was only lost to the world for a year of being psychotic.  Husband is one of my kids ha ha so ditto for him.

I also stress over the unexpected busy day, making sure I take all my meds, doing all I can for my family and friends even when an interruption comes at an inconvenient time.  I used to turn off my phone, which I still do, but I do take calls when I can as needed to be a good friend!

Well that is the main stuff.  What are some things that stress you out and how do you cope?  Comment below or email me at victoriamariealonso@yahoo.com.

Bless you all!  Of  course I pray a lot too and try to trust what God is doing.  But it isn’t always easy to do.

pax

Victoria

 

How do I keep busy while I await….

I am currently at 100 mg of clozapine, and despite the tiredness I feel pretty good hopeful and keeping up with everything for the most part…

I have applied for a job which I might get…

But in the meantime I keep myself busy with light tasks and fun hobbies.

I make bath diy products, soap, hand sanitizer, lotion, bath bombs and use my quite nice collection of essential oils, which I have been collecting the last few months.

Lavender is my favorite for night or when I am chilling, jasmine and yiang yiang during the day hours.  I not only have an room diffuser but I also wear a necklace made of lava rocks which diffuse the oils too that I am enjoying.

I also garden when it is nicer and enjoy my flowers throughout the areas I have been working on.  I also just bought a windchime for the front.  Not windy right now though.

I busy myself also with making DIY Christmas decorations.  This year will be a sad year because my daughter isn’t coming home but will be here in January.  It is because of this that I am doing Christmas very different this year.  I sent a few important cards but not to everyone I usually send to.  Why is it that only at Christmas we remember certain people?

I have been celebrating Christmas for weeks now giving away the bath products I made and little well meaning gifts.  I enjoy giving.  IT’s fun to bless someone that isn’t expecting it.

I have much serenity these days as I adjust to my new medication.  Prayer is at the forefront of every day, and I see answered prayer among my day quite frequently.  I have candles burning for different requests.  One for my dad and mom, one for my daughter and a dear friend for their future spouses, one for Mike my husbands friend who tried to kill himself but didn’t succeed but is left in a poor state, one for all my family and loved ones.  To God do I burn these candles and trust my prayers are being heard by heaven!

I do not have much anxiety right now which is good.  I have so much love and joy and am experiencing these wonderful emotions while I wait for what I do not know what the future will bring.

I have a certain sadness because of my dad.  Hoping he makes it another Christmas…

Pax

Victoria

Update: getting used to deep emotions and finding a good balance on new medicine…

Unfolding before me is a new lease on life thanks to Clozapine.  Since increasing my dosage to 50 mg I have had an increased sense of balance and well being.  I see my psychiatrist next week and am so glad to have a good report.

Getting used to my feelings without drowning them in vices…

Closer to God than ever.  I pray the rosary every day and even now it has new meaning.  Time with God and Mary and all the wonderful saints.

I am willing to continue this new life.  I have been connecting with family too which is awesome.  Family is everything to me.  My friends are right there too though.  It is good to have both really.

Life is so wonderful!  I feel more like my old self every day.  Hate to go to bed lol.

Pax

Victoria