Floral Purgatory 

Unseasonably rogue, 
these asian blankets arrive; bursting blooms of yellow jasmine; teacup petals draped & adorned by leaves of emerald haute couture –

Twisting, twirling, fertile vines dance; blissfully ignorant of nearby limbs still naked, dormant above perennials burrowed deep, wise in
slumber down below – 

As if February had come & gone, floral duvets unfurl, committed despite the sunless shift as skies begin to whisper chilly warnings – 

Indeed, blasts of arctic origin bellow frozen reminders of time & deserved tenure – Gusts expel icy spittle as winds exhale bitter shame upon buds & blooms fooled yet again by earthly powers designed by time, & Mother Nature…

Dangled on lifeline vines, canary yellow beauties once vibrant, reveal translucent, pale shades of shapeless debris – Clippings doomed into resignation & the palm of winter’s frozen ruse –

Tween changes of a season an ethereal guise unveils wonder –
It teases & taunts; a jester’s game, sans rhyme or reason, yet beauty recycles, it creates perfection renewed as life begats death til next solstice – 

Such exquisite existence, vulnerable, yet this voluminous vine embraces the organic id of a hedonistic life unknown – 
Drunk from aged elixirs borne sweet to celebrate, fermented to tantalize the tastiness of life’s purpose to devour blooms delicious.

Photo= my own jasmine blooming in the yard, enhanced with Prisma “animation” style photo art

Seasons in Time

Winter lurks, taunts asLeaves still dance
Relishing the brisk air
Tic tock, tic tock – 
Deny what’s yet to come
Predisposed to mourn 
Seasons of change 
Tic tock, tic tock – 
Distractions temporary 
Holidays, memories
Come & go, remind us
Time is fleeting, rhythmic 
Tic tock…
Tic…
Tock…


Photo by David Russell

Poem by MPP 11/28/16

Communication Challenges and MS: Develop Skills for Better Communication

people-chat2

Communication is key when interacting in society and with the people involved in various facets of our lives.  When conversing with family (spouses, children, parents, etc.), doctors, employers, friends, etc., it’s important all parties involved make an effort to give and receive information which will result in a clear understanding of one another.  This can be a particularly challenging matter for those living with MS.  Cognition, speech, meds, emotions, etc. can compromise communication.  What we say, how we say it, and how our messages are received can make or break the outcome of a conversation.  There is nothing more frustrating than trying to convey a message, yet the other person either doesn’t “hear” or misconstrues your words and intent – all efforts become lost in translation.  If problems with communication are ongoing and become chronic, the damage to our self-esteem and emotional well-being can compromise our lives and relationships as a whole.  There are ways to avoid such issues via various techniques and tools to help you develop better communication skills.  With practice, you can improve the chances of engaging in dialog with successful, healthy results.

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There are two key components vital for successful communication:  SPEAKING and LISTENING.  Listed below are a few pointers from MS and Your Feelings by Allison Shadday, LCSW

 

Tips to improve SPEAKING skills:   

  • Allow proper TIME available for conversation; don’t rush.
  • Check your emotions – avoid touchy topics if emotions are fragile
  • Stay on track – prepare ahead & write down notes of importance
  • Avoid accusatory words & statements – “always” or “never”
  • Use your words to explain & express FEELINGS – don’t assume
  • Eye contact – use it often
  • Remove distractions to increase attention & focus – TV, pets, etc.
  • Choose a comfortable setting to encourage relaxed conversation
  • Avoid insults – be respectful & open minded
  • Check in to confirm listener UNDERSTANDS; offer to clarify if not

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Tips to improve LISTENING skills:

  • Don’t interrupt – yes, this is often a tough one for the MS brain to control
  • Ask questions – clarify – make notes if needed
  • Allow for confusion or inability to respond – request additional time to think
  • Give full attention to the speaker – eye contact & body language
  • Avoid distractions – don’t multitask during conversations
  • Withhold accusations, criticism, assumptions – avoid giving advice

 

October Portrait 

Fall foliage partners with
time, as northern gusts create
aerial collages of scattered
debris, it flies in fashion of
ceremony & ticker tape parades –
Sidewalks become colored,
in frenzy like a Pollack canvas-
Beauty so fragile & short lived,
hues soon fade into lifelessness –
Chill, the winds blow, as sunsets
cast an earthly glow to honor,
to mourn a passing season.

by MPP 10/16/16