#HAWMC day 28: not anymore

(I won’t lie—I really wanted to name this post “At Least I’m Not As Sad (As I Used To Be)” but I already did that. Damnit.)

(Also, incidentally, last poem of the Heath Activist Writer’s Month Challenge!)

Not anymore

I used to be carefree. But I’m
not anymore. I
used to be weak. But I’m not
anymore. I used to be aloof.
But I’m not anymore. I used
to be afraid of losing. But
I’m not anymore. I used to be
an island.
But
I’m not anymore.
I used to be the picture of health.
But I’m not anymore.

Still.

I used to be alone.

But

I’m

not

anymore.

(Now, I’ll leave you with fun.’s “At Least I’m Not As Sad (As I Used To Be)”. Because that song is awesome.)

#HAWMC day 23: rhyme-tastic

Alright, guys. Today’s prompt for the Health Activist Writer’s Month Challenge is to rhyme Dr. Seuss-style. I’m not going to lie; I’m kind of over all the rhyming that’s been going on this month.

Instead, I leave you with the poem “Health is Wealth” by Raja Basu:

Health is our most precious wealth, I hope you agree
No doubt, health is the sweetest fruit of our life’s tree.
Money is certainly important, and so is social prestige

But it is a good health that is the source of a constant bliss.
You may have the money to tour the world, but can’t if your health does not permit
You can buy all the food of the world, but your bad health will not let you eat.
You might have huge honor in the city, with everybody bowing before you

But you will fail to enjoy it, if you regularly develop health problems new.
In this way the bad health will always play a serious bar
In the way of your enjoying what you have, wealth, house or car.

On the other hand the good health is a source of constant happines
That will automatically turn your life into one of charm, pleasure and grace.
Take good care of your health, and develop a body that is sound and strong

And ensure a life that is happy and charming, besides being long

#HAWMC day eight: why do you ask?

A plague of questions

Aren’t you feeling better yet?
Why don’t you try this wonder drug?
Or this natural cure?
Or this shiny, fabulous snake oil?

Don’t you feel better yet?
How can you be fine one day and bed-ridden the next?
How can each day be so completely different?
How can each day be so completely the same?

Are you still sick?
Are you sure you’re not faking?
Are you sure you’re not exaggerating?
How am I supposed to help you when you don’t ever stay better?

#HAWMC day one: acrostic

Though I am a few days late, I’m jumping on the WEGO Health Health Activist Writer’s Month Challenge. To rub? Write a post a day on a topic decided by the lovely people over at WEGO Health.

The first post? Write an acrostic poem using your disease. For once, I’m kind of jealous of Kerri for her diabetes. (Because it’s short, people! Geez.)

Without further ado, Psoriatic Arthritis: The Poem.

People often think psoriasis is contagious,

Something that can be caught from shaking hands.

Oh, how I wish they’d wake up and realize this:

Read my lips: The stupidity is more than I can stand!

I didn’t get the P because I don’t shower,

And PsA isn’t something that afflicts the old,

Tis true, they are both the result of the same power: an

Immune system that’s totally out of control.

Caring people can still make my burden lighter,

Although most days I need lots of pills, too;

Rarely predictable, this has turned me into a fighter,

To seem normal, a lot of acting I must do.

Help—though I may need it—is hard to ask for,

Running fast, just to stay in place.

It may seem strange to work so hard to go nowhere,

To use all my spoons to stay afloat,

It all seems worth it when I can be there

Stuck between the healthy and those in my same boat.

poetic license

I was reading Sharon’s blog this evening. She mentioned Laura Hershey in her most recent post and a poem Hershey had written. After getting lost in Hershey’s writings and mourning her loss (she was only 48 when she died in November) and the fact that I stumbled across her work too late, I went on and read the poem. It definitely hit home for me—I’m going to print it out and tack it to my wall at work—and I hope you all enjoy it as much as I did.


You Get Proud by Practicing
By Laura Hershey

If you are not proud
For who you are, for what you say, for how you look;
If every time you stop
To think of yourself, you do not see yourself glowing
With golden light; do not, therefore, give up on yourself.
You can get proud.

You do not need
A better body, a purer spirit, or a Ph.D.
To be proud.
You do not need
A lot of money, a handsome boyfriend, or a nice car.
You do not need
To be able to walk, or see, or hear,
Or use big, complicated words,
Or do any of those things that you just can’t do
To be proud. A caseworker
Cannot make you proud,
Or a doctor.
You only need more practice.
You get proud by practicing.

There are many many ways to get proud.
You can try riding a horse, or skiing on one leg,
Or playing guitar,
And do well or not so well,
And be glad you tried
Either way.
You can show
Something you’ve made
To someone you respect
And be happy with it no matter
What they say.
You can say
What you think, though you know
Other people do not think the same way, and you can
keep saying it, even if they tell you
You are crazy.

You can add your voice
All night to the voices
Of a hundred and fifty others
In a circle
Around a jailhouse
Where your brothers and sisters are being held
For blocking buses with no lifts,
Or you can be one of the ones
Inside the jailhouse,
Knowing of the circle outside.
You can speak your love
To a friend
Without fear.
You can find someone who will listen to you
Without judging you or doubting you or being
Afraid of you
And let you hear yourself perhaps
For the very first time.
These are all ways
Of getting proud.
None of them
Are easy, but all of them
Are possible. You can do all of these things,
Or just one of them again and again.
You get proud
By practicing.

Power makes you proud, and power
Comes in many fine forms
Supple and rich as butterfly wings.
It is music
when you practice opening your mouth
And liking what you hear
Because it is the sound of your own
True voice.

It is sunlight
When you practice seeing
Strength and beauty in everyone,
Including yourself.
It is dance
when you practice knowing
That what you do
And the way you do it
Is the right way for you
And cannot be called wrong.
All these hold
More power than weapons or money
Or lies.
All these practices bring power, and power
Makes you proud.
You get proud
By practicing.

Remember, you weren’t the one
Who made you ashamed,
But you are the one
Who can make you proud.
Just practice,
Practice until you get proud, and once you are proud,
Keep practicing so you won’t forget.
You get proud
By practicing.

touch a hundred flowers and not pick one

On Wednesday, the day after my perennial worst day of the week, I came home from work grumpy and out of sorts. But, my lovely husband had bought me a beautiful bouquet of flowers, with sunflowers, a green and purple plant that looked similar to nettles, yellow daisies and this amazing purple-y indigo flower. It brightened my day and brought this poem to mind:

“Afternoon on a Hill”
Edna St. Vincent Millay

I will be the gladdest thing
Under the sun!
I will touch a hundred flowers
And not pick one.

I will look at cliffs and clouds
With quiet eyes,
Watch the wind bow down the grass,
And the grass rise.

And when lights begin to show
Up from the town,
I will mark which must be mine,
And then start down!

I think I need a day like that, a day to be happy and vibrant and out in nature. Maybe when the weather cools off from the triple-digit temperatures we’ve been having, we’ll take our seasonal stroll through a local garden. That would be perfect.

A haiku about my lunch

Image via Flickr.

Here’s to my delicious lunch. The Hubs and I (though, really, it was just the Hubs; I was feeling terrible yesterday. It was such a Bad Day that I relented finally and took some of the Percocet my NP prescribed me.) made a delicious meal; we got some turkey — which we had never made before — and made sweet potato and butternut squash mashed potatoes, roasted vegetables, fresh bread and cranberry sauce. Yum.

Turkey. Cranberry.
Sweet potato. Delicious.
Thanksgiving in June.