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The soothing Sunday thoughts: This warm August night

August garden 1

I would love to take this warm August night

that stretches like a soft fog over the garden

and preserve it as a green fragrant scarf

for the cold winter nights.

I would love to take this warm August night

when everything is still so good and we all are alive,

I would weave my dreamy thoughts like threads into this scarf

for all these days when nothing is in the color of sun,

for days when I am lost and floating in an unfriendly universe,

for days that happen to show up from nowhere

when something persistently nags my subconscious mind:

our life has so many broken dreams and forgotten promises.

I would love to take this warm August night

and fold it neatly as a green fragrant scarf

and put it away,

put it away so far that I hardly can find it,

so far that when I find it I can recall this warm August night

and believe our bad days disappear with the fading darkness of night

and this scarf feels again like a warm fog around my shoulders

to prevent from death and frost.

August night

The killer success: sad story of an useless sacrifice

As my worst summer ever is turning towards the fall, I am getting more and more upset and disappointed with anything. I’d attribute some of my bad feelings to huge and non-stop doses of harsh medications, but that certainly does not change a thing. I feel like everything that was worthy and uplifting has turned its back to me.

Since I had plenty of time to waste while resting on a couch or rather trying to forget about pain and other unpleasant things, I could watch some TV. I usually don’t do that, but even computer has become not that easy to use, so, I had very little choice. The TV we have is Rogers TV, I mean Rogers is the provider. It is a kind of TV for people who most likely forget immediately what they were watching the day before. Everything is repeats and old movies. The few non-repeats are some reality shows and news. I cannot currently take any more news because it’s all Trump and Clinton. Again, again and again. This is even Canada, not the USA, but still every single word of their mouth is getting analyzed and discussed, and I have to admit I’m so sick of this that I’m changing the channel right away when I hear mentioning Trump or Clinton.

I cannot take any of the reality shows either because it feels like they are created for somebody dumb and underdeveloped. Just seeing the housewives for 2 minutes causes me to really wish I didn’t even look at them. What exactly is this about: some younger and older women with way too much make-up are boozing, partying and talking behind the back of the one that isn’t present? They sometimes fight and argue. What a great show! Really? It seems they have money and do not know what to do with it and therefore they need now popularity and TV presence. Just awful. There is lots of stuff about food, a lot. My medication causes nausea, so I have to skip those. Then there are talk shows which most often handle the same subject. I cannot take any celebrities and stars either because I think it’s so much overblown with these trending stars, and they would go on and on how beautiful they are when, in fact, quite a few are neither beautiful, nor elegant, nor good-looking. Take away all these treatments, make-ups, fancy outfits and crew of image makers and all you get is some completely average person. I also calculated that as per my recent income I would have to work for 250 years spending nothing in order to make what these stars make in just one year. It feels like there is something profoundly wrong.

So, I turned to reading online magazines in Latvian, hence there is a bit different stuff and not only celebrity scandals, politics and greed.

killer success

The article was about a woman who I remember quite well. She was just 1 year older than me and quite visible personality in Latvia between 1988 and 2002. She had just passed away a few days ago. There is nothing unusual about people getting really sick after spending the most part of their life in a show business. The unusual part was her character and her image of an iron lady. She was somebody always going against the stream, but the way she did it was not that nice, indeed. As the organizer of the first Latvian beauty pageant in 1988 and later the owner of the entire beauty contest business in Latvia, she had to turn to lots of people in order to have financial means to go ahead with these beauty contests. She handled that excellently being quite rude, always speaking her mind and never looking for an answer when attacked or provoked. Over the course of many years, this lady had spit in faces of many people, humiliated them, and eventually taken advantage of their not that splendid situations. We could call this even black mailing. Although, she became financially very successful thanks to donations of freshly baked Latvian millionaires, she went as far as to kick out her mother of the family house they had in Riga, the capital city of Latvia. She put her own mother who had and still has a very good health and could take decent care about herself into an old folk’s home. Her mother didn’t complain, but she certainly felt betrayed and not deserving such a treatment.

This lady never managed to have a long-lasting family, but she had 4 husbands, and the last one was 30 years younger than her and she married him at the age of 52 when the signs of the stormy youth years started to remind that one cannot booze for ever and it will result in some disorders and illnesses. She told she did not want any children because they would disturb her business. Parties before and after beauty contests and other events involved a lot of drinking.  That was some kind of never ending partying.

One early morning being half awake and completely drunk, this woman accidentally drove onto the side-walk where people were waiting for the bus. There were quite a few injured and one woman died on spot. The accident caused injuries to her, as well, but she managed to cure most of them for a while. The following trial found her as a very well-known woman with lots of useful connections not guilty in most counts. She only got 4 years in probation, and the society of Latvia couldn’t agree with such a court decision. However, time washes away everything, and the accident was forgotten by most, but never by the family of the deceased woman.

The objects of her stormy love affairs were quite often married men. When asked once why she was causing all these troubles to so many families, she clearly stated that the other women were no competition to her, and the only purpose of these affairs was to prove how much above the others she was and that she could always get whatever she wanted. The following years proved her wrong and, most likely, she had to learn the hard way that nobody of us is able to build our happiness by destroying other people’s lives.

Her health worsened to quite a great extent during the last five years, and she obviously could not continue to shine in public events being on crutches and later in a wheelchair, hence, the after effects of that bad accident which took one woman’s life and made a few others disabled did not pass her either.

The circle of well-situated and famous friends shrank rapidly. Nobody was interested in a completely disabled aging woman who never cared about anybody else, but only about her own success and prestige.  In fact, she was in a lot of pain, but suffered very lonely, even her mother was in the old folk’s home and could not visit her.

So, she had passed away on the floor of her almost empty bedroom. Alone, with nobody praying for her and nobody crying after her. Next to her, was found a packed bag because she had decided to also move to a shelter for disabled people. This decision came a bit late.

The only person who took some care about this once so famous lady was a middle-aged neighbor. This neighbor said she had changed extremely during the last half of year. The reason was the clinical death at the hospital she had gone through. It is possible she had faced some warning signs or something that was awaiting her after the death because she had asked to bring her mother to her and also to send letters asking for forgiveness many people who she once had betrayed or offended.  Mother came; she is 89 now, but still having a fairly good health. The only thing this woman told her mother was: I wish you could take me on your lap and forgive me all pain I have caused you. I wish I could start my life from new, but this is where it ends. The mother forgave her, and I suppose, she can finally rest in peace.

life in ruines

This made me think:  there is success and there is success at any price which demands one to lose all human feelings and to walk over corpses and destroyed lives. One should really carefully watch for signs when success turns against them and eventually becomes the killer. The killer of their human nature and later the killer of their health, wealth and anything which makes this life worth living. The question is: how far should one go in order to be successful and how much should one sacrifice in the name of success? Doesn’t the success at any price become a lost battle for anybody involved? The ugly side of success means sacrificing everything, even one’s life.

Photos: http://www.skatkartes.lv/elejas-muizas-drupas/

The inappreciative patient and my lost summer pleasures

I have mixed feelings towards people who are too positive, too optimistic and expect too much when there is no good reason to do so. It is twice as bad if your doctor sees things for not what they are, but assumes them way better than the real condition shows.

lost summer 1

This is my stormy summer

The surgery itself went quite smoothly. We cannot escape unpleasant feelings and sensations with lots of cutting. However, I was very shocked when they quickly dressed the huge wound and told: ok, let’s go. I wasn’t really able to walk because one part of incision was fairly close to the ankle while the other which did not cause that much discomfort was under the knee. This leg has grafted skin since 1992, so this type of skin is unable to hold sutures. The doctor told there was no need also to apply something else. He proudly announced we would expect this to heal quickly by second intention which simply means: wound that is extensive and involves considerable tissue loss, and in which the edges cannot be brought together, heals naturally from the inside out. I certainly was concerned when they told me to walk right away, but my head was very foggy, and so we drove home.

I was wearing loose long pants, so only when I fall in the bed and lifted up the fabric, I noticed blood spots. They became larger and more and more intense until I had to cover this up with a few more layers of gauze. The blood was literally streaming through the gauze. I called the doctor’s office. They told to send a picture. It’s needless to say, my exhaustion was insane and pain was increasingly stronger, so it took me big efforts to send a picture over the phone, sounds funny, but it was like that. Well, they said: I had to go to emergency. Emergency was quite surprised how they had let me go, but after some 3-4 hours they were able to fix the issue and stop bleeding.

I am always careful with medications I am prescribed or signs and symptoms which occur. The pain was just stronger and stronger. The ankle area was totally swollen. I had fever, too, and that was pretty much an indication of infection. All surgeries have 2 main complications: bleeding and infection. It looked I was getting both. If my head was clear and I had my normal brain sharpness, I most likely had noticed what antibiotic I was prescribed. I did not pay attention; I just took a pill from the small container and watched the clock not to miss some dose. On the next day, I was fairly sure, things are not right. I have had so many surgeries in the past that I am able to feel when something is getting out of control. Some so-called home care doctors came; they took vitals and had a look at the dressing. I had to go to emergency again. The doctor who checked the wound at emergency seemed to be really in shock. It’s infected, he stated. Well, I knew it already, but nevertheless, when I looked at the wound myself, I almost fainted. Necrotic spots were visible; the look was so terrible that I started hysterically crying. The part that hurt me most was: so much of viable tissue was lost. I needed it, I needed it so badly in order to heal!

Thankfully, they had sent a wound swab to the lab. Meanwhile, I was given i/v and attached to an i/v antibiotic infusion pump. It’s a fairly uncomfortable thing, if you are not familiar with it. They had initially attached it to the vein in my right arm, straight below the elbow, so for a few days I couldn’t use my right arm. This pump stays with you for 5-7 days, so one is very limited in mobility because the long infusion line gets caught everywhere and sleeping with it is scary.

On Monday I received a call that I have to return to emergency immediately. Why? That was the third time within 5 days. The antibiotic I was receiving was not able to handle the nasty microorganisms, they didn’t give anything about this particular drug, there was a complete resistance.

3-4 more hours at emergency, and finally I was given another i/v, another antibiotic which supposedly would be working. Therefore, I had lost more than 4 days, and for type I diabetic with extensive surgical site infection, that is like eternity. 3 more days with my friend infusion pump. This time I knew how that feels to have this pump attached day and night to the vein, so I got the line inserted in the left arm, on the outside and not directly under the elbow. If only my head had been clear enough to follow-up on these antibiotics which I was given! I had told the doctor: cephalosporins DO NOT work. The previous doctor had already found out that. I really regret there does not exist a unified online database with patient records so that any treating physician could see sensitivities, intolerances and resistances right away, BEFORE MAKING SUCH TERRIBLE MISTAKES, before causing conditions which are absolutely preventable. Nevertheless, he had prescribed exactly cephalosporin. Did he think I had no idea what I was talking about? His ignorance caused me abnormal troubles, pain and resulted in severe complications. It’s hard to understand, but it seems every doctor in Ontario prescribes cephalosporins as a first choice medication, and most likely that is causing the resistance. They are overprescribed and over-applied.

The doctor? He told everything was fine even when I sent the black and blue necrotic and infected wound pictures. Is that even possible that somebody can be so wrong with the evaluation? Does this somebody have zero experience? Is he so sloppy and negligent that he does not want to admit things went so wrong because of lack of ANY PREVENTIVE MEASURES? It looked bad and shocking, and it was clear the healing will take much more time. Not to mention the stress, anxiety, worries, frustration and despair.

Lost summer 2

Meanwhile everything is blooming outdoors

I do regret I did not try harder to raise funds for having this surgery done in Latvia. I had never such a bad experience before, and quite honestly, I would not have survived the injuries back then if treatments were like this one. It makes me feel as if patient does not matter. It all comes down to money eventually. The doctor said if he was even ok with me staying at a hospital, they did not have enough beds for such “easy” (?!?) surgeries.

The only thing I still hope for is: this has a good end. This wound heals without any other complications.

Lost summer 5

Summer goes on with colors and heat

Meanwhile, my lovely summer disappears with a speed of light. I love the crisp mornings after rain, I love the exhausting heat and sipping cold lemon water in my backyard. I love watching my flowers and vegetables blooming and exploding in beauty. I love the saturated colors of ripening vegetables, and I miss the garden work so much! The last good year for me was 2013. That was the year of my daughter’s second wedding, the year of traveling and pleasure. My biggest goal is now getting this finally fixed and forgetting everything that happened this summer like a bad dream. I haven’t painted for a fairly long time. I feel so exhausted, so drained and so helpless at the moment. When I’m seeing quotes and wise advises on what’s life, what’s success and what’s happiness and similar intellectual pearls, that makes me laugh and cry at the same time: just stop pretending you are not aware how things do not depend on you. Living in the moment is fine, as long as this moment is tolerable for you. Nobody asks or ever will ask you whether you are ok with pain or struggles that are inevitable. Everything has a very logical cause and a very logical effect. I am mobilizing all my internal energy and strength at the moment to overcome the side effects and to bring the wound to a good healing stage. Well, it’s already looking better.

lost summer 3

Catalpa tree has made beans already while I was sleeping inside

The soothing Sunday thoughts: I refuse to go with the flow

To sit in the backyard and watch everything growing,

To see how blooms come up and how tomatoes get red.

Do you have time for that?

I refuse to be caught up in the trap of the endless rushing.

I simply refuse to burn out myself chasing a mystery.

Must haves and must dos, must sees and must becomes:

It’s a lost competition for me.

Growing 4

I have to be part of the growing:

To watch children growing,

To see the garden growing,

To witness myself growing old and then older.

And growing becomes a part of me.

Growing 2

The greens of the backyard: are they ever soothing!

Plants have no growing concerns and no fear from their fate.

The greens: such a miraculous, endlessly calming quietness!

This must be the secret of growing:

At our own pace, at our own terms.

At the end, we all become ancient cities:

Lost somewhere deep under happily growing greens.

Somebody will be watching this growing.

Who knows whether they realize

How many hidden treasures are underneath?

Growing 3

Scars from the past and fears of the future

Some people are definitely more intact than others, and I am referring to people who have experienced severe mental or physical injuries and traumas. Some have inherited or developed stronger defense mechanisms; therefore, they can withstand bad relapsing conditions and depression triggering events easier. I think our mental strength gets also affected with any physical trauma. I am not one of those people who write blogs about their struggles and suffering. I know that sharing a bad condition brings sort of relief and can possibly show the way out to others. It’s just possibly, because there are no two 100% identical cases, there are just similarities, maybes and huge inter-and intra-individual variations. However, as bad as my conditions and pain might be, I do not want to allow these disorders and pain to identify me.  I just refuse to be somebody who always suffers since that’s not what I am here for. I am here to protest, to oppose, to help, to teach and share some facts and my discoveries.

art of surviving disaster 6

Nevertheless, it’s been 3 very tough years. Again. I already had once 3 very tough years after I left the hospital which had become my home for almost a year. It’s very interesting how before the accident I didn’t even know what a simple headache was. After the accident, I learned everything about hospitals, pre-and post-treatments, medicines, their side effects and I discovered billions of new small bits about the human body and the ways it functions or dysfunctions. So far, I have spent 30 years studying everything from depressive and cognitive disorders to anything related to type I diabetes, heart and vascular, kidney, liver, lung and digestive diseases, and I am paying special attention to the brain activity and anything which affects it. While I can fairly well assess my own disorders, I cannot cure them on my own. Apart from being hard to tolerate, pain is also exhausting and drains me out of energy. It is capable of doing this to the point when I am almost always asleep. Pain is a bad and obtrusive companion: I wake up with it, I go to sleep with it, I have my lunch with it and it seems to be always around.

Those of you, who live with chronic pain for lengthy periods of time, probably are aware that pain makes us more vulnerable, more sensitive, more open to depression and desperation. Whatever somebody would say, whenever the pain attacks, we have to experience it on our own. If you are extremely sensitive to any chemicals and medicines as I am, you are aware how they make one sick even at doses which would be considered tiny and mild. So, that’s the issue, I am trying to be stronger than pain without much of medications. I would take them only when it is absolutely, completely intolerable. Even in these cases, I’m using only 200 mg or 400 mg Ibuprofen or Advil. Nothing stronger, nothing which affects the brain function and interaction of brain chemicals. I take pills rarely, as rarely as only possible. Instead, I am crying, tossing around on a couch and feeling how my willpower leaves me. Why? I don’t want to damage more than inevitable my kidneys, my liver and get ulcers, bleeding or holes in the stomach which can happen with prolonged use of potent pain relief medications. Unfortunately, when we have to rely on OHIP (Ontario Health Insurance Plan) covered care and treatments, the waiting times are insane. It can take about 6 months to see the specialist. In my case, it took 3 years to try getting something done. I am going to have a surgery very soon. I am absolutely scared because the results are not very predictable. In fact, they are much unknown, but since there aren’t plenty of choices, surgery seems to be the best option.

I do anything which I can, which I can at the moment. I certainly hope to return to normal life. I would love to have normal nice summers and winters again; I would love to go out here and there, to have some vacation, to see and meet people outside this place, to do anything which most people can do without any problem. Well, I hope to be there someday soon.

I also disagree with those who are convinced: once you let the past go you are like brand new and ready for a fresh start. How about the past not letting you go? This accident happened 24 years ago and that’s when I got quite a few new acquaintances: lots of pain, depressive episodes because I wasn’t able to cope with life as before, so on and so on. Whenever we are just fixed up after bad mental or physical traumas which happened in the past, we will never be the same. We will have anxieties and fear of so many things which were unknown before the trauma. We will be patched up and sewn together, but never again without cracks and scars. These scars might be invisible to others, but they are always there. Fears and worries are sneaking up on us whether in a dream or in reality.

Before your hand starts writing you are sorry (in case you decided to read this update since I was so bad, I couldn’t post anything for quite a while and most likely I’ve lost all followers), I would love to say I don’t want somebody to be sorry. It’s ok not to be sorry. I am a fighter, I always have been. I would appreciate much more you went to the gallery and art blog and checked out my Fine Art America link on the right side and the art for sale on the art blog. Ironically, when we are in the least favorable state and condition to make some money, we need the financial support the most.

art of surviving disaster 3

Yams

art of surviving disaster 4

More of my yams experiment

art of surviving disaster 2

Zucchini

art of surviving disaster 5

Cucumber blooms

The other thing which I am doing to get my mind off is my backyard and plants as you can see above. I have put something in the soil, just like always, and yams are absolutely experimental for me this year. Not much happening with painting, but the bits will be published on the gallery blog assuming I get to this before the surgery.

The soothing Sunday thoughts: what does he see?

Look at the old man,

He is so peacefully sitting under the apple tree.

What does he see?

Rivers rushing away like years,

Somebody’s face who he kissed

Under the blossoming apple tree?

What does he see?

Was that a glimpse in eternity?

No more urges, no regrets and discoveries.

It is all gone, but he finally has no need

To rush, to chase, to speed.

What does he see?

Nobody runs away from the death,

Nobody gets away with his sins.

He has now time and he just dreams it away

Under the blossoming apple tree.

What does he see?

It feels like he has the answer,

It feels he has got the entire eternity.

Eternity 1

My Angel’s Day

May 18, usually a fantastic and very pleasant day of spring is my Angel’s Day or my name’s day. This day for many Latvians is almost more important than their birthday. It also is one more day to celebrate something beautiful, and we are honoring the person and their name on this day. Russians refer to this day as Angel’s Day, and I have to admit it sounds so poetic, therefore, I love using this description a lot.

Angel's Day celebration

Latvians got their name attach to particular dates since late 18th century. The church calendar probably gave the idea, and it became an extremely popular way to congratulate people who we love.

Statistics tell us that there are currently 12,713 Ineses residing in Latvia. Many Latvians have relocated to other countries, so there are definitely more Ineses out there if we take into account the entire world’s population. It has been one of the most popular names for at least 5 decades. I am proud I have this beautiful name and I am happy my parents chose this name since it suits me so well.

Angel's Day Angel

The small angel was given to me by my mom. She always gives me very thoughtful greeting cards and very interesting gifts. This small angel sits on the shelf very close to my desk to watch over me, to protect me and to always remind me about my mom.

Angel's Day Love

I don’t know how they do this, but lilac is always blossoming where I am on my Angel’s Day. My angel sits on my right shoulder and we are both extremely happy because it is spring, because there are flowers and because all summer is still ahead.

Inese’s song

We have a song which was composed by a very famous Latvian composer Raimonds Pauls. It was written for a musical play, but it became much loved, and it is always played on the radio and on the TV on May 18 when numerous Ineses will receive their guests with rich dinner. The most usual gift is flowers. One doesn’t need anything special, not even invitation. So everybody can make happy everybody. Happy Angel’s Day dear Ineses all around the world!

The Mother’s tree

I have a box of memories. This box holds everything which I could take with me from my past life in Latvia after I moved over to Canada. It is amazing how little space can be filled with memories of 46 years, and that’s all I have from there.

As I’m going through yellowish pictures, some as old as I am now, some even older which makes them 70 or 80 years old, I’m having a look at my mom. She is so diligent, loves moving and doing everything so much that even now at 85 she is still busy in the garden and at the sewing machine. Her eyesight has worsened a lot, but that does not stop her. My dad was like that, too: always busy with something. We had a fantastic place over there in Latvia. It was a semi-detached house; quite honestly, it later caused a lot of problems just because it was not solely ours, and my dad built it practically from scratch, when we moved to this small town Saldus, it had only the outside walls and sort of main structures.

Mother's day

He and my mom worked hard to make it a lovely living space. My mom is a born gardener, somebody who genuinely understands the nature and character of every plant and tree, and I believe I have inherited this knowledge because I have green thumbs, too. We had a huge orchard, 2 greenhouses and many flowers and vegetables, all kinds of them. These, who know what life was like in the late soviet era, can recall how nothing was in the store, so most food which we had on our table came from our own garden. Thankfully, gardening was the greatest thing I could ever learn. I started helping early, we were just small kids: sister and I, but it was an unwritten rule that everybody has to participate in order garden and orchard received the attention they deserved.

My mom in her 30

My mom in her 30

In my memories, there’s always spring and blossoming apple tress in this old place which doesn’t even exist anymore. I suppose, that will be my most favorite time of the year for as long as I live. There were white and sweetly pinkish clouds of blooms all along the garden path as we walk down the hill. The house was at the top of a hill, so when standing there, one was overlooking the most beautiful scene imaginable. Cherries, apple trees, plum trees, pear trees, black, white and red currant and gooseberry bushes were on both sides of the path. I think it’s not a coincidence I love painting garden path images. Whenever I think back, I am seeing my mom under these blossoming apple trees. It is spring, it is warm and sunny and dad works in the small shed he built, as well.

Whenever I think about a mother and her importance in our life, I am seeing a huge apple tree, wide and strong and it carries its fruit through dry, rainy or stormy summers straight into the first frosts of the fall. Branches are so strong and flexible at the same time, but they are in a full beauty in early May. Mother and a blossoming apple tree are synonyms for me.

My mom working at greenhouses

My mom used to work in huge greenhouses, I was quite often with her, I was 4-5 since we didn’t have kindergartens 

I never developed extreme attraction or attachment to things one can buy, but I found an endless opportunity to express myself through things one is able to create. Therefore, creativity became my true existence. That is thanks to my mom who is the most creative person I’ve ever known. She created home decor, pillow cases and curtains, thousands of dresses, skirts, blouses, dresses, coats and jackets. She still loves designing and sewing aprons. She gives them as a gift to people who love cooking or doing work around the house. She could create any outfit one only can dream off. I took over this skill when I was 12; and when I was 13, I was wearing everything made by myself, that included coat, pants, skirts, blouses and tops. It takes my mom nothing to create the most beautiful flower arrangements, and I obviously am good at that, as well. I think my feel of good composition and balance within a space or image takes its origin right there: that is the way my mom would arrange things. Harmony and balance was the main feature of any of her creations. I’ve never eaten more delicious patties or home- made pies. Thanks mom for allowing me to become not a consumer, but so much more a creator of anything beautiful around us! I think it is a precious skill which carries me through life and makes my living so much simpler.

My mom at her sewing machine

Returning to the memory box: I was surprised how few photos I had from all these years. Well, cameras and smart phones were not available as they are now, so having taken a picture was a big deal. I cannot describe the heartache when these pictures didn’t come out as good as planned. It does not really matter whether I have only a few or lots of pictures. My memory has it all: the old house, the orchard and my mom under a blossoming apple tree. That’s all what matters.

My mom in Latvia

A recent picture of mom, just last year, she is 85

The soothing Sunday thoughts: rose whispers

The day was getting tired.

As I was about to walk towards my porch, I suddenly heard how the rose whispered: “You cannot go away and leave me alone. As the stream of time takes everything with it, it does not distinct between the trash and the treasure.

Everything flows away with it, so does the beauty, so does the ugliness of our despair.”

“I will return another day, just keep blossoming. My patience is short today and my pain takes me to a deep valley of suffering,” I said more to myself, but I had to experience this sad monologue:

“One day long, or one life long: the flow of time knows no difference. It is a glimpse; it is a short while for it whether you value that moment or not.

Stay with me, you cannot leave me alone.

The beauty has the shortest of lifespans. I have only this small moment from all the eternity. It will never come back.

Stay with me, you cannot go away and leave me alone.

The other day has other worries; there is never enough time for the beauty to blossom. There is always enough time to suffer, to cry and to despair.

So, won’t you leave me alone?” she asked fearfully.

“No, I won’t. I will make some time, I will stay with you.

Nothing ever returns, and it only leaves us. I have to make time for you. There is only this one moment from all the eternity. I will not go and leave you alone. I will make the time stop, although, it will last only a few hours.”

Rose whispers Mindful living

Mindfulness is a state of active, open attention on the present. When you’re mindful, you observe your thoughts and feelings from a distance, without judging them good or bad. Instead of letting your life pass you by, mindfulness means living in the moment and awakening to experience. Author: https://www.psychologytoday.com/basics/mindfulness

I wish you love, appreciation and strength on March 8, the International Women’s Day

This day is permanently associated with the most beautiful spring celebration in my memories. It always was and still is widely celebrated in Latvia, Europe. Unfortunately, we inherited this great day from the former Soviet Union; it was a part of socialist understanding of praising women’s role and importance in the society. Well, it was supposed to be like that, but March 8 got transformed into a really festive day when every single woman was feeling happy, admired, appreciated and loved.

International Women's Day flowers 5

It’s hard to say what I understood with March 8 as a kid, but I certainly was happy to receive beautiful spring flowers on this day every year in my life until I moved to Canada. What’s celebrated here? Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day, and we have begun hearing about the International Women’s Day, as well, but as a part of movement for women’s equality and as a part of feminists’ attempts to get society to understand how strong and valuable women are. Valentine’s Day never took off in Latvia, not to the extent it is celebrated in Canada, and Mother’s Day is a very personal day, so, yes, I am still for March 8, the most beautiful and democratic celebration of every single woman, whether married or not, whether with kids or not, whether famous, or not. Every woman who feels like a woman and is happy about that.

International Women's Day  beautiful daffodils

This day, March 8 never carried this feminist meaning for me. I’ve always been very happy as a woman because I am a woman, and would say this is thanks to the type of family I could grow up. My dad was an extremely handsome man, and my mom still is an extremely feminine woman who always paid a lot of attention to housekeeping, the way she looks, the way she dresses, the way she interacts with other people, although, she had to work hard and long hours. I could see that a real woman does not have to be like a man to show her strength and ability to perform complex and sometimes difficult tasks. A woman does not have to demonstrate she can survive well without support of a man and a husband.

I believe the happiest women have always experienced lots of respect, lots of admiration, lots of understanding. I know that I have. Women can be strong, and there’s nothing actually they cannot manage. However, if you would like to be respected and celebrated as a woman, you have to allow the society and other people to respect and understand you. If you push away a man who’s holding the door open, if you kick out of your way somebody who’s trying to give you a hand, that does not mean they think you are weak and couldn’t do it on your own. That means they want to show you their appreciation for a woman.

International Women's Day carnation flowers

When I was 12, I got a fashion magazine which was published by Aenne Burda edition in Germany. I spoke also German at that age, and I had learned sewing, so this was my most favorite magazine, it was just extremely difficult to get, just like everything else from abroad. There was a picture on the back cover of this Burda fashion magazine: family at breakfast. It looked like spring. There were 2 neatly dressed kids, the man was ok, but nothing special, and there was this woman. She was slim, seemed to be quite tall with long blonde hair and oval, very attractive face. She looked adorable! I absorbed this look, and I told to myself: when I get old and older I want to look just like her! Well, and I sort of always was since I had never any weight problems, my natural hair was always blonde, and later I kept it that color. However, the most important message was under the picture. It read: WE WOULD LOVE THAT EVERY WOMAN EXPERIENCES HOW BEAUTIFUL AND ADORABLE SHE IS. I certainly remembered these words, too.

International Women's Day 7

I have had fantastic moments and extremely bad moments in my life since, but whenever I was walking down the street or whenever I was at some kind of event or party, and I got those looks which said: oh, you look so nice, I always cited these words in my head: WE WOULD LOVE THAT EVERY WOMAN EXPERIENCES HOW BEAUTIFUL AND ADORABLE SHE IS.

However, wearing a nice dress and high heels, as well as, being able to show off feminine body forms does not make woman a woman. There is so much more, a complete feminine universe, a brave way of thinking, a unique ability to handle and manage things and people. Every woman is different, and it is good that way, however, they all should feel appreciated and respected for what they do and what they are.

International Woman's Day hugs and greetings

Thankfully, life gave me plenty of chances to experience how appreciated I am as a woman. I wish you the same and more and I am sending you hugs and flowers on March 8!

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