Bright, Is the Light In Rocky Seas…..

After three weeks, I’m ready. It has been a disastrous time. I want to say it was the flu, but who knows for sure. At one point I feared it was pneumonia, maybe even something deeper that I dared not even stare at. Since Peni’s passing, I fear any illness. For as you know, a simple cough on her part lead to her death a few months later. All it took was one trip out on the ocean, and a vulgar display of indispensable joy. I didn’t have a jacket, and found myself battered by 50 degree winds from the north for the better part of the day. It was the morning following that I realized something was amiss. Within two evenings I had yet to rise from bed, could hardly breathe, woke painfully to a body whose joints dared not move.

For nearly 2 weeks I didn’t bathe, I couldn’t get out of bed. I ate rarely, sipped the occasional tea and soup provided me and would slink back under the covers. Two quilts, a wool blanket, flannel pajamas, and a pair of heavy socks couldn’t keep me warm enough, yet I couldn’t stop sweating. I truly did get scared. Watching old “Murder, She Wrote” reruns brought back a flood of memories. I have great moments in my childhood of my grandmother and I watching those shows…..and gossiping about the latest Anne Rice book. After all, I’m currently sleeping in the bed my grandfather had delivered to my mom’s place before he died. When he knew his time was coming to a close, he came to stay here in the guest quarters. He left the woods, left his prized off-the-grid life to a view of the ocean as he took his last breaths.

So, all of this frightened, but comforted. As if to say, if this is how I go, if this is how I die, then I’ve got ancestral comfort around me. I was that scared. I don’t deal with illness well. I’m a little kid again. Still looking for comfort…. I insisted on an old Savannah swamp recipe for Chicken Soup, whose recipe I won’t recite now, but rest assured, it generally cures this kind of thing. The drawback? It cannot be altered in any way, must be done on a certain day, and cannot be consumed at anytime other than fresh. For instance, you cannot cook it, freeze it for the moment that you need it, and expect it to work. Furthermore, it takes some hellish ingredients many would cringe at, and hours to prepare (about 8).

I had the soup, and last week started to feel better. I began to bathe again, knit again, eat proper food. I saw myself beginning to rise from bed at my usual 5 or 6am, make coffee, and get about to work.

My company during Christmas failed. Or rather, I’d appreciate saying, that my company took its biggest fall during that time. Because I won’t allow myself to think that my company has been ruined for good. I’ve not known a more intense moment over the last year of my knitting teddy bears where the patience of my supporters was tested. (I will never EVER call them customers). Unable to knit, I didn’t make the Christmas Eve deadline so many were relying on. I handed disappointment its biggest reward over the last few weeks. An illness that, looking back, had I tried harder to fight off, tried harder to combat, would have kept this business, my reputation, and my livelihood on track. I’ve not been selling, nor aggressively promoting since I got ill. And now?

Now, I have one singular motive in mind: do good by those who believe in me. So, for the last few days, bears have been flying out wildly. And even a month late by now, I’m still obligated to making this work, making those bears become the central focus of a singular person’s smile, and pushing forward into life with the one thing that has given me the hope that so much of life had at one point taken from me. Yes, I’m back, in full force, in full momentum now, and pushing hard (without distraction) to fulfill every single order that has come in. You have my promise. I have my honor at stake, and no matter what I may have to my name or not, that one clinching sense of honor is the one I will always hold onto for dear life. My name means everything. My reputation is squarely mine. I have only my apologies and obligations to tend to now. Nothing else matters.

There were some pleasant moments throughout the last few weeks I’d love to share with you. I want this blog to end on a good note of hope, optimism. I got to meet my great nephew, Carson, for the first time! Yes, I am now a GREAT uncle. šŸ™‚ My niece delivered the little fella just shy of Thanksgiving. So, at 5 weeks old (and eerily quiet), I got to see him. I couldn’t hold him, because of my being ill, but I got to take a pic of him with one of my bears with a zoom lens. Boy, I can’t wait to leave something great to him, an empire….He’s the closest thing to a descendant I have, considering I don’t, and can’t have children. So! The funny thing is, my niece’s husband is Native American and has one of those really cool names like Flying Eagle. His last name is Barefoot. So, the big joke was that my niece was now “Barefoot…..and pregnant!” Too funny.

I celebrated my 39th birthday on the 4th of January….with absolute zero fanfare. I’m wearing, finally, FINALLY, a very warm peacoat thanks to someone who probably would wish to remain anonymous.

I wanted you to see this photograph, wanted to leave this blog this evening with this shot I took yesterday morning from the view from my new, permanent home (thanks to everyone, especially Sadrinne). I think it speaks wildly about the way life has been for the last 3 weeks. Storms were coming in, the boats were about to be battered….but, there…just there, comes the shining brilliance of light to remind and forebode that all will come round to well again. Hold on tight. No matter how bad the storm gets, hold on tight. Everything will come round to well again.



  1. About ten years ago, I was struck with a flu that left me bedridden for five days. I survived on crackers and nuts and could barely crawl to the bathroom. Go downstairs? No way!

    I thought I was going to die, and I suppose I might have…but I didn’t. I slowly recovered and returned to work.

    I now get my flu shot every year, without fail. “Congestion” seems like such a poor way to go out.

  2. So sorry to hear you were ill for so long an am glad to hear you are on the mend. Congratulations on your new great nephew! It’s amazing how a new baby can help restore order to life. : )

  3. It is truly horrible to be so unwell that it scares you. Glad that you are so much better, and that you had people around you to support your through it. Also good to see there is a new home for you and Mario.

    Also, whilst I am sure you feel very duty bound to deliver on your promises of bears, don’t you DARE go beating yourself with the guilt hammer. Seriously, how was this your fault? Did you say ‘Smite me with an evil illness that I may let down those who are supporting me and to whom I am so grateful”? Err, no!

    Yes, work with your usual fervour and usual passion, but do not knit guilt into those bears – no-one will thank you for that, and you really don’t need to feel guilty. Honestly!

    Sermon over. Go forth and multi-ply (ohh, a pun!!!) dear friend. God bless. x

  4. I was just thinking about you yesterday and wondering how you were doing. I used to get deathly sick like that every year when I was little, and would miss weeks of school. I no longer believe it was the flu. Looking back on the stuff that was going on in the atmosphere around me, all the hidden black emotions of bitterness, resentment and self-pity, I now believe I was purging everything I had been powerless to stop from ingesting. I grew up as a scared little kid who didn’t understand all the negativity around her. From what I’ve read in your blog (I’ve been following it since Lion Brand provided a link through their blog, so not that long ago), I sense that whatever disaster you came through that caused you to lose so much was very similar to the stuff I went through. All this to say, no wonder you got sick. I don’t believe you were “sick” at all, but rather going through a cleanse of body, mind and spirit to release all the stress and tension, fear and anxiety, of the preceding period. From my understanding of what you went through, I would say getting “sick” was unavoidable. I think our system knows when it has had more than it can handle, and has to do an “adjustment”. So I totally agree with Dith that it’s not right for you to take on any guilt. And from what I’ve seen of your supporters, not one of them is going to be yelling at you for being late with an order. Disappointed? Sure. But their feelings and reactions are not your responsibility. They have the choice of how they deal with them. You are demonstrating your honour by getting back on track and showing that this was temporary, you are not a slacker, you are not using it as an excuse to get free of your commitments. So big hugs to you, and don’t overwork yourself trying to get back up to speed. All things in moderation, and one day at a time.

  5. Been reading your posts since I heard of you through Lion Brand. Good to hear you’ve landed somewhere permanent and are on the mend. My hubby came down with the flu and it seems to linger this year, even with antibiotics. We also wanted to extend and offer of yarn, as we have a huge stash. We actually have a room in the house devoted just to yarn, and would love to send you a box or two of acrylic (I can’t touch the wool) if you can use it. He knits, I crochet mostly for charity these days, but could go the rest of our lives and not finish the yarn we have, so would love it to go to someone that could use it. Let us know. -Nikki & Ryan

    1. I have been blessed with a TON of yarn these last few months. Lionbrand made sure of that, along with a swarm of other supporters who’ve read my blog. I can’t thank you enough for the offer! Does Ryan belong to Its an awesome group of guys from all over the planet. If he IS there, let me know. I’d love to be in touch. Sorry you can’t touch the wool. But, I understand. I’ve worked up quite a few pieces for people who have children who are allergic. Thank you so much for the offer, I’ll send you a private email šŸ™‚

  6. I am glad to hear that you are no longer ill. I have been fighting something since before Christmas. It seems to go, then comes back with a vengeance. I hope things are going well for you and your company!

  7. I have been wondering about how you have been. pleased to hear that you up and about and feelins so much better. With all that you have been through it’s no wonder you werent well! But I am sure things are going to be alot better for you now. How do I order one of your bears? I am in no hurry just me let me know once your orders are slowing down.. Take care and hugs to you and Mario

  8. I’m so glad you’re feeling better! I agree with the folks above, feel no guilt over this illness. You didn’t ask for it. You have had such a down and stressful time recently that it attached itself to you, and you won. Your following of supporters will still follow you and things will go up from here. You are blessed and we are blessed you share this with all of us šŸ™‚

  9. Oh good heavens me…. I wondered already where you had sunken into but really didn’t expect it to be a bad bad flu thingy! Poor you …

    But I am sooooo much happy to see the view! The new view! Your view!!!

    The storm will pass and fine weather will be up on the horizon!

    Hug you from a desk submerged in work but so happy to read the good news!


  10. Here it is, the middle of January, long after the holidays, yet my Family Newsletter needs to be written, printed, stuffed and stamped envelopes. Reason for my slacking? not my own illness, but my dearly beloved cat, who has been a faithful companion for over 16 years. I have to push fluids and wipe his backside. At his age, a bladder infection is a crisis.
    All the humans far and wide who don’t bother to read my twice-a-day status updates on Facebook will just have to wait for that paper in the mail.
    When I’m not fretting with him, or doing household chores, or at the job, or marriage maintenance, I like to crochet. My square baby blankies are not nearly so preciously cute as your bears, tho šŸ™‚

    1. Mario and I had a third some many years ago. A little guy named Mac who came along, fell in love with us, then passed away from FLUTC. Its never easy to watch the little ones go. Mario and I got closer after that. Should anything happen to her, I think I’d be a wreck. I’m so sorry to hear about your cat’s illness. Keep your chin up, keep the updates swirling through cyber space…..and on my end, I’ll keep a prayer or two for you and your cat constantly close.

      My best,

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