by Barb Creager

7-Day Writing Challenge9 Comments

(Day 7)

As Mother’s Day approaches many moms are using social media to post memories of the day their children were born.  This is in the form of a questionnaire/game and includes length of labor, medications, weight gain etc. They’re fun to read, but I don’t seem to remember those details so I don’t participate. I think, gee, am I a bad mom that I don’t remember those things?

There are many things that I do remember. I remember the joy of holding my son for the first time. I remember he had to fight for his life from the very beginning. I remember his hugs.

Then there are memories of us taking long bike rides in the Spring, Summer and Fall. He loved biking from a very young age. Sometimes we would make a day of it. Complete with a picnic lunch. In the Winter there was sledding. That was fun too, but also cold.

We also took many vacations. Most were camping. I never camped as a child, but when my boy wanted to camp, guess who bought a tent and started looking for campgrounds. They were great times filled with so many wonderful memories. Oh, and the bikes came with us.

There were non-camping trips too. One of the best was Space Academy in Huntsville, Alabama. We drove there from Maryland and made several stops along they way. My son wrote a story of our visit to Natural Bridge. He was sure there was a spy following us. What an imagination! Although we weren’t together the whole time he was at Space Academy, I did get to see him several times. One was while he was in the gyroscope apparatus. He really had that thing spinning.

Of course there were also some trying times. One day when he was in high school, I came home to find one of the doors of my car spread out on our side lawn. He was replacing the stereo and the speakers were mounted in the doors. Fortunately he knew enough about what he was doing that he could put it back together. The CD player worked great, which is what he was after. However the antenna for the radio, which had raised and lowered when the radio was turned on and off, never worked again. No more car radio for me!

My son is now grown and lives in another state. I miss the days when he was nearby but I have the memories. And we’re still making new ones, just not as often.

 

(Day 6)

The Ark

A week had passed since Terri had seen the ad with the kitten that needed a Forever Home and she couldn’t get that cuteness out of her head. She decided to contact the shelter listed in the ad – The Ark, a no-kill shelter.  She tried calling but the line was busy. The Ark was on DuPont Avenue, not too far away, so she decided to just drive there.

The Ark looked more like an estate home than an animal shelter.  There weren’t many other homes in this area. The property was lined with a neatly trimmed hedge of boxwood bushes. A variety of trees and flowers dotted the landscape making Terri wonder if she had the right place.  Then she heard barking, perhaps this was the right place. Parking her car in the small lot across from the front door of the house, Terri was again surprised by the elegant structure before her. It just didn’t look like an animal shelter, or a shelter of any kind.

Terri crossed the parking lot and walked up the steps to the front porch.  She rang the doorbell, but there was no answer. Hesitantly she tried the doorknob. It’s wasn’t locked. Stepping inside she called out “Hello. Is anyone here?” A moment later a young woman wearing jeans and an Ark t-shirt came into the room. “Hi, I’m Dona. Sorry to have kept you waiting. How may I help you?”

 

(Day 6 – more!)

Terri liked Dona right away. It was probably her smile and easy manner.

“I saw the ad for a Forever Home for a kitten. Is it still available?”

“Twinkle? No, she was adopted. But we do have others. Are you set on a kitten? We also have older cats, puppies and dogs. At one point we even had a horse. Would you like to look around?”

Terri’s resolve to provide a Forever Home was starting to wane. Should she really do this? Dona saw her hesitation. She’d seen it before. Gently she took Terri by the arm and led her through the double doors.

“This first room on the right houses the puppies. We like to give them supervised freedom as much as possible. It helps with socialization. There is also a fenced play area outside for them.”

Terri peered through the glass portion of the door. The pups looked happy and playful.

“On the left we have the kittens.” Several were chasing one another. “They’re very playful today.”

Terri saw a number of scratch poles and climbing towers. The kittens were very cute.

“Follow me,” said Dona, “ we also have adult dogs and cats.”

The adults dogs were housed in what must have been a large living room. This room had several large cage areas. Special doorways had been cut in the walls to allow the dogs to go outside into a kennel run. To the left of the this room there was another slightly smaller with also housed adult dogs.  These dogs were smaller breeds. Dona explained that all the dogs also had play time outside in a large fenced area complete with a pond for swimming.

On the second floor were the adult cats. Shelving had been installed throughout for the cats to climb and traverse. There was also a screened in porch so the cats could get some sunshine and fresh air

As the returned to the first floor Terri asked “How many employees do you have?”  Dona was quiet for a moment then said “Not enough. We are fortunate to have some teens who volunteer and a few adults too. But as for paid employees we only have three. Without the volunteers we would’t survive.” Picking up a grey cat who had wandered in, Dona asked Terri “So what do you think? Do you want to start the adoption process?”

 

(Day 5 of 7-day Writing Challenge)

The Ark

A week had passed since Terri had seen the ad with the kitten that needed a Forever Home and she couldn’t get that cuteness out of her head. She decided to contact the shelter listed in the ad – The Ark, a no-kill shelter.  She tried calling but the line was busy. The Ark was on DuPont Avenue, not too far away, so she decided to just drive there.

The Ark looked more like an estate home than an animal shelter.  There weren’t many other homes in this area. The property was lined with a neatly trimmed hedge of boxwood bushes. A variety of trees and flowers dotted the landscape making Terri wonder if she had the right place.  Then she heard barking, perhaps this was the right place. Parking her car in the small lot across from the front door of the house, Terri was again surprised by the elegant structure before her. It just didn’t look like an animal shelter, or a shelter of any kind.

Terri crossed the parking lot and walked up the steps to the front porch.  She rang the doorbell, but there was no answer. Hesitantly she tried the doorknob. It’s wasn’t locked. Stepping inside she called out “Hello. Is anyone here?” A moment later a young woman wearing jeans and an Ark t-shirt came into the room. “Hi, I’m Dona. Sorry to have kept you waiting. How may I help you?”

 

(Day 4 of 7-day Writing Challenge)

Computers!

Who hasn’t struggled with them. Whether it’s software or hardware. Believe me I’ve had my not-now-no-this-can’t-be-happening moments. At one point my loving son, who is my natural tech support, said “Mom, you shouldn’t even have a computer!” Now that wasn’t the most encouraging thing to hear but there was an element of truth. A few years later and after working in tech support for a computer company he decided Good Old Mom wasn’t so bad after all.

Computers themselves are bad enough but when you add a cat to the mix its nearly impossible to work. The want to be sure to mark the device as their territory. And if you’re working on a table it can get interesting very quickly.  My cat rubs and rubs until she knocks my tablet off its stand. But once satisfied that she’s won the territory and has my full attention, she’ll settle down and let me work. At least for a while.

And the computers at the office! Oh my!! Everyday something new goes awry. How often have I watched that spinning circle go round and round.  The thing must be trying to hypnotize us so we don’t know how long we’ve been sitting there staring. I’m not the youngest in the office, but I’ll tell you I can’t wait until these IT experts get older and find technology has outpaced them. I’ll bet they’ll be singing another tune. By then I’ll be retired and have time to actually learn the tricks of the trade.  Maybe then I’ll be able to answer their questions. But for now I muddle along doing the best I can, stroking the IT egos when I need help and being thankful when the day is done. Then I come home to the home-computer issues. Such as how to email a document from my iPad. I did finally figure it out. But oh the frustration!

And here’s another issue – passwords.  Good grief. Every company and organization has its own rules for passwords. The length and configuration changes so much from company to company you can’t keep up. Of course you also have to change your password periodically.  Here’s the really crazy thing, I have a password app to store all my secure passwords. At least I don’t write them down like a lot of people do.  That’s real secure.

And the security questions……don’t get me started.

Time to Refresh J

 

(Day 3 of 7-day Writing Challenge)

Before long Terri fell asleep. It had been a long day. Her sleep was anything but restful. Her dreams were filled with little lost puppies and kittens crying for their mommas.  Waking during the night, Terri picked up her journal. Her mind was rolling with thoughts. Thoughts she must write down.

Dear Journal,

Why do I write?

I could say I write because I have to. It’s true but that sounds so trite. How can I express this drive I have to put my thoughts and even dreams on paper? Sometimes I think I’m crazy or soon will be if I don’t get these thoughts recorded. I’d like to think my words would be helpful to others. But deep down I know I mainly write for me.  Sometimes as I write I get revelation or an answer to an issue I’m dealing with. And sometimes I just feel relief.  That’s probably the best part.

I’m starting to realize I need a shift in focus. Too often I only look at what I can’t do and what I don’t have.  I need to move my focus to what I can do with what I have now.  As they say, yesterday can’t be changed, tomorrow isn’t promised, but today is here. A new page. Hmm.  Yesterday can’t be changed. True. But it can change today and even tomorrow.

Now wide awake, Terri started thinking about her Forever Home. It would be a big house with lots of rooms and windows. There would be a big yard and a wrap-around porch. No, a house isn’t what would make a Forever Home. It’s the life and love inside that makes it one.  This is where her refocusing would come in. she looked around her house.  It was modest yet roomy.  Some renovations were in order. First she’d spruce up the guest room to be welcoming. But welcoming to whom? You can’t just start bringing in random people into your home. Then it hit her, not people, not yet anyway. She’d start finding her Forever Home by giving a Forever Home. Perhaps she’d start with that kitten.

 

(Day 2 of 7-day Writing Challenge)

WANTED: A FOREVER HOME

Dear Journal,

What a day it has been. I had to shuffle through layers of irrelevant data.  All the while thinking “what’s the point?” It’s good to be home – Ahh – the weekend – time to relax. Quiet. No one pulling at me to do this or that. Nope, no one here to make any demands.  No one here.  Just me.

Vacantly flipping through her online feed, Terri came upon the picture of a cute little kitten with a sign – Wanted: A Forever Home.   A Forever Home, that’s what I need. I wonder if there is someone out there who would adopt me. No, I’m too damaged. My life was a mess.

Fighting back tears, Terri returned to her evening routine. Tonight she was preparing spaghetti, her own special sauce, salad, garlic bread and *some scrumptious dessert, I’ll think of that later*. Just because she was alone didn’t mean she couldn’t enjoy a good meal. Terri’s mom had been an excellent cook and passed on many of her secrets. She turned on the radio and was soon lost in the rhythms of the Oldies Station. Hank, her grey cat, was patiently waiting for this part of the evening to end so he could get more attention.

After dinner Terri curled up with one of the books she was reading. Many of her friends found it odd that she had several books on the go at all times. She explained that each served a different purpose, but most didn’t get it. Tonight’s selection was a mystery.  As she read, her thoughts kept going back to the Forever Home. What would hers look like?

 

poetry (Day 1 of 7-day Writing Challenge)

A dream born of adversity

The pain, abuse and hurt

A goal seemingly out of reach

The trials and temptations

A hope of healing and release

The joy of seeing progress

A success to be shared

A lesson with something to teach

9 Comments on “by Barb Creager”

  1. Barb Creager

    Miss you Gloria. We need to get together soon. Both Char and I are poets. Just need to get some published.

    1. Gloria Bostic

      Absolutely! My schedule is crazy the next few weeks and we’ll be going on vacation in June, but let’s promise not to let this summer go by without a visit.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *