Tag Archives: be kind

Keeping my word: update 2

*image sourced from Pexels library, is not Atutmn*

My visit with Autumn in the hospital was very good and very needed. She is a beautiful woman that has been hurt many times in her life, and in horrible atrocious ways. I think more than anything that is her biggest hurdle to being well.

I took her a $15 orchid from Hy-Vee (midwestern grocery chain). She cried because they were beautiful and unexpected.

She cried several times, because she explained that she honestly had a wary reaction to our offer to help, along the lines of: ‘what do they want from me’.

It took me explaining my journey with mental health caused by thyroid disease (which I now know probably has it’s root cause in a chronic viral infection) and how much I have had to go through and deal with and figure out on my own. I explained that when I begged God to help me pull up and fix everything, that I had promised to return the favor to others, and she was simply my first encounter to fit the bill.

I also explained to her that for both mine and Nathan’s hospital stays 8 and 10 years ago, there was no one that helped us navigate those times. I simply said “everyone needs someone sometimes, and Nathan and I didn’t have that someone when we needed it, so when I realized she didn’t have anyone, I was determined to be there for her”. She cried again.

We connected on similar childhood journeys and the battle with depression, including many of the symptoms that leave a person feeling crazy and like no one understands. She was amazed when to her comment of “sometimes the world seems so flat and two dimensional”, my response was “like everything looks like cardboard cutouts, like paper dolls”. I explained that I now know that is a symptom of brain swelling combined with exhaustion, your brain literally compresses your view into a more easily processed flattened image, it helps conserve energy and enables processing when the physical structure of the brain is literally under pressure. I told her my last bout of that was when the virus flared 3 weeks ago, and it made driving home very difficult. She cried again, and I cried too.

She was so relieved that someone really truly understood what she was going through. That she wasn’t alone and that there was hope. I told her I’m not perfect, I still have bad days and fall downs, but I will take my occasional fails over the constant struggle of years and years past. I reassured her it isn’t the easiest fix, and can be really hard to maintain, but is totally worth it. She wanted to live to try, and that is huge.

She has had a much harder adult life than I have and that led to some of her current woes. The infection itself started when a drug dealer abducted her and forceably shaved her with a dirty razor. That was the precipitating event that was ended with a police standoff and her being admitted to hospital care. That was one of many horrendous stories she shared with me and Nathan. My heart goes out to her, no one ever deserves to be treated like that.

Regardless, I promised her that I knew several things we could try if she made it out of the hospital. Things that would help with her depression and possibly other health concerns that have been sidelined by trauma and the MRSA infection. Even some techniques that combined with her psychiatric care might help release some of the traumas’ damage. I will not replace the pros, merely supplement.

I also told her if I had known about her job loss, I could have helped with that too, but now we’ll have to wait for her to get better. See, like me she was working with an elderly woman doing home health. Where I go and come from several people, she had one lady that she worked with all the time and that lady had passed away causing her to lose her source of income. I told her that I am connected to the elder care network in this city so well, that if I had known I could have found her work quickly. She cried more.

She was simply overwhelmed that Nathan and I are so willing to help her in what seems to her as huge ways. She said “To think I went to a cafe so many years ago to read a book to escape my father’s abuse.” I told her “I know, sometimes you never know when you meet someone as to what it will mean later”.

Please do keep sending prayers. I may have given her just enough of a nudge of encouragement for her to pull through, but only time and God will tell.


On another note, a friend of ours from college, living in Iowa, is going through a rough journey as well. He could also use prayers. He has more of a support network, but he has small children like me and as you’ll see below and equally scary prognosis as Autumn.

These are challenging times, and the virus of the news is really the least of the problems. The news still wants you to think it is the worst, but I really don’t think it is. I keep reminding people that if someone has health problems slowly taking their lives and corona polishes them off, then corona gets the sole blame. I will not be one bit surprised if at the end of the year, the heart disease, cancer, and other death stats are far lower than they typically trend. It’s how they are padding numbers to make the stats scary.

Beyond that, we are experiencing a global shift and the survivors will be the ones that take care of themselves, but also help humanity find oneness and healing.

If you get stuck in fear, anger, or divisiveness it will likely cause you much more immediate problems. The more time you spend in negative thought patterns, the more likely you will suffer and may not survive. I know this is my biggest challenge, but it really is for everyone, especially with the external input we have available at this time.

You must honor yourself and your needs as much as you are able. You must quiet the mind as much as you are able. You must look for your inner being as much as you are able. And when all else fails look for the flowers or cute kids or adorable animals to distract yourself and find moments of positivity. It is difficult, and I too struggle to do so at times, but coming together and aiming for positive solutions is the main solution for everything.

I half want to write a post expounding on why medicine is scared over this or any virus (the lack of post-contraction treatment beyond symptom relief); but I halfway don’t, because it would cause me to focus on things that piss me off and which I have no solution for personally. I want medicine to solve the problem, but acknowledge there are mechanisms far beyond my control preventing the corporate desire to want the ability to cure chronic viral infections.

I know focusing on that topic for too long would be detrimental to me. I may still work on that post a little at a time. It needs pointed out and expounded on, but if I am to do that I will have to do so in manageable ways that help maintain my own energetically-sovereign-self. We shall eventually see if I can do it or not.

May you find ways to maintain your energetically-sovereign-self and stay buoyant in these challenging times. May you take care of yourself enough to survive the shift. May you see ways to help others do the same. May we all reach for oneness and helping humanity progress for the better. May you see the value of acceptance of others and oneness, and thus enable humanity to improve and survive the shift as a collective. If you are certain it is your time to go, and none of this is possible for you, then may you have the easiest quickest gentlest transition possible. May we all know that God loves and supports all of us and wants all of humanity to grow in positive ways. May you see that God really wants us to genuinely care about those around us, regardless of blood ties or any other superficial ties. May you share the light that helps us all get through our days just a bit easier.

Siva Hir Su

Finding support through clarity.

This evening I found myself stiff from one too many days without yoga. I proceeded to fix that while mentally running through things I knew were in my vortex. It was providing relief in several ways.

Now I sit much more relaxed and significantly more flexible, and struck with a sense of I may have effed up, but that it’s because I feel another also did.

In my cycling through my vortex one of my thoughts was that I really deserve recognition of all the things I know, voluntarily learned, and regularly do for others. I’m just tired of feeling like the lowly pee-on.

I have aspirations and dreams, and soon I might actually be able to buy into, or just outright buy a business that is larger scale than my self-employment scheme. Yet no one out in the world sees or acknowledges how much I do, have done, and how hard it was for me to even get this far.

I just wish I had a congratulations once in a while. I don’t even have acknowledgement of my retention rate or that I average a 20-22% tip rate, last month I made nearly $1000 in tips (credit and cash combined), and my actual in-office massages netted $3200. That’s a 30% tip rate. That’s amazing. Yet no one noticed, at least that was acknowledged.

This was with all the odds in my life journey stacked against me.

I grew up in a poverty-mindset laden home, with an abusive father, yet I worked my way through college, graduating in 4 years with honors. I took 2 semesters of heavy class loads one at 18 credit hours and one at 24 credit hours, having to request special permission from the dean to do so. It enabled me to graduate on time. And what no one cared about was that I accomplished it while working overtime at my job at Motherhood Maternity because the assistant manager was caught drinking on the job and sent to rehab while the store manager was on maternity leave. So me and one other staff person kept the store open and running while I was taking a double load at collegiate level. Yet my grades never suffered, only my sleep.

On top of that fact, I graduated in 4 years with honors from a big 10 university after having transferred schools twice due to financial dilemmas, something that at the time was rare to find accomplished.

I worked 2 years using my degree in a graphic design position, not making the income that I needed, even with continuing to work a driving job I started in college. The two jobs combined were still not enough income for life with student loans from only 2 of my 4 years of school. I decided I needed to shift to a career with better chances, but without spending too much more on my already costly education. The massage program won because it also enabled me to help people.

So I had 2 degrees, a massage therapist certification, work experience in 3 very different fields, and I thought for certain things would improve. I began to navigate becoming a massage therapist. I also married Nathan and began helping him navigate divorce, child visitation, and all the related problems. We moved (twice, on no budget) to attempt to improve things again. Then Nathan’s health failed.

I supported a family on my own for a decade and still managed to drop thousands on a failed mobile home remodel and thousands more on vehicles wear and tear from a 90 min daily commute.

After all of that, I released some of my work, to accept my massage therapists’ job upon her retirement knowing that there was a possibility all her clients would hate me and schedule elsewhere. I’ve lost my buildings to being Covid casualties. I had to forfeit insurance switching to the clinic, and currently pay out of pocket to attempt to fix my own health. I have battled thyroid and life-fail induced depression for 20 years.

Yet, I gave birth to two healthy kids at home in water. I have survived Covid financially and that is even with now having both a mortgage and car payment. I now have a majority of all of the clinic clients because one therapist never came back and the other keeps pissing his clients off. I have also gained many new clients that had never been to the clinic before, and my retention rate is through the roof. And during all of this I have lost 2 dress sizes in clothing (regardless of the stupid scale not budging), and I have healed my body in many ways, one being that I no longer fight depression constantly.

Yet no one acknowledges any of that, that is except my Nathan.

So then after all of that I remembered getting pissed over the chiropractor and his new signs that made sure he was recognized, while the rest of us were the fine print to ignore.

My awareness this evening brought knowing it was because he wanted acknowledgement for his efforts and his hard work. For all I know his educational journey was just as challenging and I know it was more costly. But I also have an awareness that his family has always been prosperous, and his previous career was too. It’s not that I don’t think he had challenges, it’s just that his challenges seem fewer and definitely not of financial nature. Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe his cards were just as stacked as mine, but he doesn’t talk about any of it, so how am I to know.

So now I have a keen sense that I still want honored and recognized, but I don’t want that to be at anyone else’s being unrecognized. I want us all to be acknowledged for our efforts equally.

See here’s the thing, we all have had a journey. If you’ve made it this far into adulthood, you’ve done a lot. The longer that you live the more you do and learn and accomplish.

But some us do seem to have the hard road, and it would be nice if those on the easier path could see that and just give some sentiment of congrats for making it through. It doesn’t make their path any less to acknowledge someone on the hard journey made huge strides, but it does help those battling all the odds want to keep fighting the good fight.

I just want people to be more aware of how their actions can be hurtful and if it wasn’t on purpose, then that is what apologies are for. If you are genuine an apology goes miles.

As for me, at this point if I say certain things I could get fired, I’ve already been warned of that because of a prior language/communication fail. Beyond that I can’t really talk about my goals of buying [or into] a business, because I am still waiting on my unique situation to fully resolve and become details I can actually work with. Until I know the full details and have sorted some things out, it’s just hopeful speculation.

So for now, I’m just going to quietly keep learning and doing, and do my best not to step on anyone’s toes or fail to recognize other’s efforts. I don’t need or want to put anyone else down, I just want to feel like I matter and people know everything I’ve gone through to get where I am. I just want a little recognition and honor… Like Rodney Dangerfield would say, “can’t a guy get a little respect here?!”

May you see your own worth even when others don’t. May you honor and respect everyone’s journey. May you see those that have made it through harder journies than you. May you lift others up and find ways to bolster their efforts. May you see that those around you care and respect your abilities and knowledge. May you have evidence of your worth. May things generally go well for you and my your journey get easier daily. May you have the success you seek, not just financially but emotionally as well. May you know that God loves and supports you.

Siva Hir Su

The world needs more like my mom.

First I wanted to share a YouTube video that was a good reminder for me. I told a friend the thing I dislike the most of everything going on is the polarization, fighting, and fear that an awful lot of people wish to participate in. This video is a slight twist to things I’ve suspected and suggested myself, but her words are better at conveying it.


Now for my intended topic :

For every failure my dad demonstrated, every trauma incurred by him in my childhood, my mom showed brilliance. In fact she is the one that I credit for keeping me from being completely like my dad, and teaching me better ways to live .

My mom was my protector, as much as she could be. My mom was my support, the kindness in my world. She taught me how to care about others through kindness and her own personal charity workings.

She knew how to apologise, and her biggest faults were apologizing too much and falling prey to dad’s dominance and a general poverty loop.

My memories of mom are exact opposites to the memories of dad. Where dad is mostly negative memories with a smear of positive ones, my mom is mostly positive ones with a smear of negative (and really the few negatives tie back to dad in one way or another).

My mom was the person in our family that was always doing something to help people that were less fortunate.

I remember one Christmas season my mom was worried that we ourselves would not have a holiday celebration of any significance, and knew she needed to rely on K-Mart’s layaway program to even try to provide a holiday. However, she knew someone that was struggling even worse than our family was. Their family had 3 small children and when she went to put our toys on layaway at K-Mart she picked 3 small toys for the other family to include in her layaway purchase. I remember her being worried about timing because the last payment was due right before Christmas, but ultimately she made it work and both our family and theirs had a holiday that year.

Then there was our next-door neighbor when I was about 4 years old. It was an elderly lady that had emphysema from having smoked for her whole life. The lady lived alone and had no close family to help her. She continued to smoke even while using oxygen. My mom promised her that she would come clean her mobile home and make some food for her if she promised not to smoke while her and I were there. The house always smelled strongly of cigarettes and I disliked being there, and often the lady would have a cigarette ready to light as soon as we left. Yet she never actually smoked when we were over, and my mom did continue to help her every week until we had to move away. My mom never charged her anything, only asked she pay for any groceries paid for on her behalf.

My mom was big on helping at Christmas time. She would always find an acquaintance or co-worker that was having a particularly difficult year. Sometimes she would give gifts, sometimes decorations. Occasionally, if we were having a good year she would do both. I remember several years where I helped her pick presents for other little girls. One year she helped a Mexican family she worked with and provided much of their Christmas. They had moved to Iowa City not long before that holiday season and were caring for elderly extended family from Mexico. She provided them a whole array of inexpensive decorations and small gifts for kids and even bought them a turkey. My father was very upset with her because she had helped a Mexican family in such a large way. I have always respected her choice and it always bothered me that my father kept pointing out their race.

Help is help, and anyone struggling to get through life deserves help. Those barely getting by, need the boost of a little holiday cheer sometimes, and kind hearts make the world keep functioning. That is a lesson my father missed, because he would help anyone that was white, even druggies, but not a hard working Mexican family. Charity is not about skin color, but honoring someone’s journey as being more difficult than deserved, and making an attempt to help another’s life be just a bit better than yesterday. Everyone deserves that moment.

My mom was also a nurse that mostly worked in nursing homes. Mostly working evening and 3rd shifts, there were several times that my mom would have to take us to work with her and Dad would pick us up on his way home. Hindsight being what it is, I now wonder if those supposed long shifts were parts of his affairs with other women. Regardless, what I remember on those nights is how mom always got along well with her co-workers and was kind to residents. There was one nursing home I actually enjoyed going to because they had a resident cat. The cat had made friends with mom because she was the only one that was really kind to it. So, when us kids went, we were accepted by the cat as being friendly as well. It would hang out and let me pet it the entire time I was there. The same nursing home also had a huge fish tank, or what seemed huge to me, and I loved watching the fish. But really, I remember my mom rubbing backs and convincing people to take medicine because it was good for them. I remember her patiently explaining to people that she would help them as soon as possible.

Is it any wonder I have spent nearly 8 years working with elderly? Or that I get along with my mom far better than my father?

Despite working mostly nights when I was a kid, my mom still cooked and cleaned and took care of us children during the day. I remember when I was really little trying to pry her eyes open and asking her if she was ready to get up yet. She would just say “a little longer can you watch your shows please”. I would watch all the PBS shows including Bob Ross and another lady painter that did adorable little animal paintings. That’s where I got interested in art. When I would get bored with TV I would pretend. I would play family or school or tea party, or lay in sunbeams with my kitty and daydream that the dust flecks were fairies. My stuffed animals were great friends when my mom was resting from her work shift. Then around lunchtime she would spring into action, make me lunch and start cleaning, laundry and prepping for making dinner. As I got older she would let me help by showing me how to dust or make Kool-aid.

Then eventually I started school, being the youngest for many years, and she actually got a full amount of sleep.

I remember spending holiday time baking a whole array of tasty treats with mom. I ate far too many things right out of the oven, but it was just SOOOO tasty. The best part was knowing that many of her delicious treats were for others. Should would make goodie baskets for friends and co-workers, she would give breads and cookies to neighbors. She baked pies to help other families have good holiday dinners. And it wasn’t just at Christmas. When our zucchinis would ripen she would bake loaves and loaves and give away nearly half of them. At Easter she would bake cookies and muffins and give them away with chocolates. On her birthday she would always make two cakes, one for home and one for work. All year round she would cook goodies and half always went to other people. When I was in highschool a neighbor made pickles and she would trade goodies for pickles. They would combine their leftovers for other neighbors to get some of both.

When times were really tough for my mom in Utah she would drive across state line to buy butter by the car full. She would take the butter to her neighbors and sell it cheaper than the Utah taxed butter but more than she paid. When she wasn’t running butter she hauled manure, because one farmer would pay her to clean out animal stalls and another would pay her for the load as fertilizer for crops.

She made dolls and crocheted doll dresses by hand. She baked for profit and for fund raisers for school. She crocheted blankets for friends with babies and would give them as gifts whenever she could. She made clothes for us kids when she couldn’t afford to buy new ones.

I have always felt terrible because the year bullying started for me, she had made me some very pretty dresses for school. Yet, they were not dresses found in stores, so kids noticed. They teased me for not having store clothes and then I didn’t want to wear the dresses. I knew it hurt my mom’s feelings, but the kids were hurting my feelings. There was no good solution. It was the first time I struggled with a problem like that. I have always wanted to make up for it and felt I never could.

I love my mom and I really appreciate everything she did for us and especially for what she tried to do for us. I know she did her best to keep dad’s anger at bay and protect us when she couldn’t keep it away. I know she had more than a few ingenious moments that kept our family afloat when times were tough and she made dollars go far further than most people manage. She was strong and compassionate and caring on multiple levels. She put her kids first and God second, and was always doing her best to make our lives and the lives of those she knew better. She is a kind human being and that is exactly the kind of person this world needs more of. I aim to be like my mom as much as possible, and hope maybe one-day I’ll figure out a step even slightly better.

I love you mom.


May you always have a kind person in your life. May you see acts of kindness all around you and find ways to do them yourself. May you have loving caring parents and be successful in protecting your children from the hurts of the world. May you forgive yourself and others when hurts seem to multiply or affect those you want to show love. May you know your presence in the world is helping others to have a better experience. May you know you are leaving a positive mark on the world. May you know you are loved and safe.

Siva Hir Su