This Year: Life, the Universe and Everything.


Even though I’ve been wiped out for this entire week afterwards, my birthday outing was worth it. The day before, I had found a third-hand mobility scooter (at a third of the price) on Craigslist. I have been looking for one that could handle rough dog park terrain (big wheels, decent suspension, strong motor), but could still be dismantled and put in a car (ie: not the fun Harley-esque one I had my eye on, similar to my friend Jak’s). My husband drove two hours round trip to buy it and I was able to take it to my favourite off-leash dog park: 40 acres of trails, fields and river access.


The weather was sublime. Actually, that was the only blip in our day: as soon as I arrived, I had to park in the shade, strip off two layers of shirts and have my husband reach up my yoga pants to peel off my compression stockings. Plus, I was drinking hot chicken soup. I was kicking myself for not bringing sunscreen. But, after that, all was well, if a little harsh and bumpy on my bones. This 4-day payback headache I have is probably from jostling my spine on the gravel and mulch (and I won’t mention the horrible nausea that hit me at 10pm and the relentless barrage of nightmares that followed that night because this is meant to be a happy post).


Big smiles. 🙂



I couldn’t get a photo, but there were huge blue herons flying into the nests and babies up in the trees.


My boys playing with a new friend.




That evening, my sister and her boyfriend came over and she suggested getting take away food from a nearby restaurant, which I hadn’t even considered. So, we ate dinner at the table (as opposed to my usual on the couch with my feet up, reclined) and I had a delicious beef tenderloin and coconut rice. They accidentally put some Gorgonzola on my steak and, oops, I forgot to scrape it off. That was a celebratory taste explosion that I haven’t encountered in 2.5 years.


“The hills are alive….” Pretend I’m spinning…

Then, to top everything off, two days later, I got a visit from my dear friend, Z. She came bearing flowers and a bag of gifts for me to open and, the best part, her little girl, whom I consider a niece. Baby A chatted away, which is all new! The last time I saw her she hadn’t quite found her words around me. What a treat.


42, the answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe and Everything.
It’s going to be a good year. I have faith.




9 thoughts on “This Year: Life, the Universe and Everything.

  1. Sally says:

    Wheels, dogs and green spaces! Bliss! Lovely pictures too.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Jak says:

    Whooo hoooooooo, you got out with the fur babies!!!!!!!!! 🙂 I know it’s made you feel like death warmed up, but at least you have those memories to treasure. I’m so pleased you’ve managed to find a suitable scooter that was affordable – hopefully you’ll be able to get out more now on your ‘not quite as crap’ days.

    Fab that you also had visitors and a nice takeaway. Not quite the birthday you’d initially planned I know, but it sounds lovely nevertheless and I’m so happy that you managed to do some of the things you wanted to 🙂 x

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much, my friend! I am SO happy we found a scooter, but, ever the naysayer, it is hard knowing it’s there and I can’t just drive it out the door with my dogs. I was telling my husband that we should live in the countryside, so I can just scoot out whenever I want and not wait for the one Saturday or Sunday that he’s home and I also feel well enough to do it. I’m STILL hurting from my outing. This is a long payback for a minimal excursion, I have to say.

      Thanks for always cheering me on. X


  3. kneillbc says:

    Yeah!! I’m SO glad!!! Perfect weather here for the last few days- actually managed to sit outside to watch my daughter play! Amazing. What is it about watching children play in the sunshine? I don’t know, but I agree. It’s the meaning of life. All wrapped up with everything else that is full of wonder, or joy, or love.
    I’m so glad you got your wheels!!! I know I should, too, but my vanity is interfering- I’m really holding myself back. Now that I have a decent mask, I could actually DO things if I had a scooter. Seeing your pictures- of obviously different places- nudges me that much closer. It’s not ‘giving up’, it’s making the most of it, right? Now I just have to convince myself of that…
    So glad u had a good day. I’m currently paying for yesterday, but it was well worth it, too.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Karen, every time I think about my favourite thing being to see my dogs happy and every time I have a gruesome nightmare involving their safety, I wonder what sort of a mess my head would be in if I had actual human babies. What an incredible responsibility and I’m so happy you could have a special time with your daughter.

      Re the scooter: I have no qualms about being on the scooter anymore. All of my fears were thinking about it, but, once I’m on it, it seems normal and nobody looks twice at me (besides kids). Having said that, I know you were self-conscious about people thinking your weight necessitated the scooter and not your illness. I completely understand that you’d want to hang a sign around your neck saying, “I have dysautonomia (or whatever)!” But screw them. It’s all about reaching out and grabbing what you can, getting a bit more life in your life. Different places, different smells, the feeling of air rushing past your face… It’s worth it. X

      Liked by 1 person

      • kneillbc says:

        You’re right, Liz. To hell with them!!! I need the scooter simply due to fatigue. I can do one city block, if I go very slowly, and don’t have to do anything else after that. Especially when I have my mask on, I fatigue so quickly. I do think I’d get out with my kids a lot more if I had one- I wonder if there is one that could keep up with a bicycle? That would be just fantastic!!!
        I’m working hard on the ‘ignoring other people’s judgements’, but it’s hard because it is ubiquitous. Of course, doctors are the first to assume that if you are overweight you are not only fat, but stupid as well. I can pretty much guarantee that if I was an athletic man, I would not be told to ‘toughen up’, or to ‘push through’ my anaphylaxis. I’m pretty sure a doc never would have said ‘you’re just going to have to live with the pain.’ to him, or ‘You have a sensitive stomach.’ It is everywhere, constantly. I have had doctors ask me if I know how to read a label on the side of a box. Seriously? I have a Master’s Degree in Speech language Pathology. I can handle a nutrition label (well, as well as anyone can!!! 😃).
        You are right though, I cannot allow other’s judgement stop me from living as best as I can. I took a step that direction yesterday, actually. I’ve been looking at some swimming suits/UV protectant clothing, and there was this one swim jacket that I really wanted- it’s this brilliant, amazing blue pattern. I couldn’t help but think ‘black would be better, you’ll disappear more that way.”, but, I bought the one I loved. People are going to look at me anyhow- I will be going tin the water (or at least walking at the edge of the surf) in my Capri length swim skirt thingy and a beautiful blue swimming jacket. I’m gonna be hard to miss, but dammed if the sun is going to stop me, right?
        On that note, I am off to see a new doc. I’m pretty sure it will at least be some help.


        Liked by 1 person

    • Karen, I love your spirit! Don’t let yourself disappear. Wear that bright swimsuit! 🙂
      Are you on facebook? I’d love to connect.


  4. […] are still, always, a lot of daily debilitating symptoms. For 3 full weeks after my birthday outing, I was not doing well. My flu symptoms came back and that always alarms me — chills, sore […]


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