One might think this is a blog about comfort foods - but food doesn't really bring me comfort. I enjoy a hamburger now and then, macaroni and cheese and even a tasty beef stew. But when I am troubled or hurting, I rarely reach for food.
Last night I was thinking about this very broad subject. Nights are the worse. I can't quite get the timing down so I'm taking the pain pills just before bed. So I have to decide 'do I take 1/2 a dose, do I wait awhile, do I just take it and see what happens?' I have not had many pain pills in my lifetime - they do weird things to me. Most of the time it might take away a specific pain but leaves me feeling like I've just experienced an anxiety attack to beat all anxiety attacks. These pills just make me sleepy - that kind of sleepiness like when you're in college listening to the most boring lecture on biology when your head just keeps drifting off!
That's how I felt last night as I was trying to get comfortable and go to sleep in my Family Room. Some of you will remember that I finally put this room together last November. I bought a fold out couch from IKEA, a sewing desk & chair, and a glass case for my "treasurers". But while I was lying there trying to take my mind away from my pain, I thought about all the other things in that room that bring me such comfort.
The winter scene of Norway my grandfather painted in 1944 which ALWAYS hung about my mother's piano. It draws you in, makes you feel embraced by the beautiful scenery in Norway, especially in the wintertime. Every time I opened my eyes last night, there it was. It also reminds me of my mother playing her piano every evening after we went to bed - she loved the piano and practiced every day.
Then there's the church - I'm not sure where in Norway this church is located but it has always hung in my parent's living room with such assurance that life is perfect just the way it is. I also have a line drawing of the house my grandmother and her family grew up in - I can only imagine what life was like for her in the Northern part of Norway way back in the early 1900's. I'm sure this home, her parents and her 11 brothers & sisters made her into the person I knew as my grandmother.
Then there is my wall of ancestors - those who served in the military (including my father and Tom's father), my great grandmother who, as stories go, was the sweetest little woman ever (my mother called her little grandma), and my dear grandparents and parents. These are the people who came before me - I have spent most of my life looking at their beautiful faces. I have a couple more large photos of my Grandfather's family and his parents - someday I will find a place for them. And what would say comfort but my own children, children-in-law, step-children and grandchildren.
The last important thing I have in my comfort room is my Irish Ann & Andy dolls. I made them in the 70's for my parents - my father is Irish. Their names are Ruth & Pat and next to them is the greatest photo of my Grandfather (the artist) who worked for the biggest Twin Cities Newspaper as a photographer and a photoengraver. I always loved this photo.
While I was NOT asleep last night, I was thinking about how much all these things mean to me. They aren't decorative, nor are they valuable to anyone but me. I am so glad I decided to pull down the couch, cover it with a blanket, and use it to help with my recovery. It's the perfect place to do my exercises; I keep the night light on (the lighthouse Tom gave me just after we were married); and I have plenty of room to get up during the night. But I am also embraced by all those who came before me and who have been instrumental in making me the person I am today.
My recovery is happening slower than I expected, but I think that's just my expectations at play. I can walk easily with the walker when I am not in pain, I can do most of my exercises without help which is huge, and some nights I actually have a reasonable night's sleep. What more can a girl ask!