Help for Healing

Bitter & Sweet, living daily with grief


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Balance

Life is a big yo-yo most of the time. Most things are little up and downs and some things are a bit more dramatic. I was having a really rough time for a few weeks in December and then a few weeks in January. It hit me this weekend though that I actually had a decent week!

Getting to see your busy therapist an extra session during the week

Having your meds tweaked just a bit but it seems to help

Seeing a dear friend from high school who I really admire

Getting feedback from my consulting job that my dumb jokes are “making a difference” for staff and patients alike at the cancer hospital. (This was a complete surprise because my job is just to do interviews. Sometimes we make the biggest difference when we aren’t trying to.) And YOU think my jokes are bad. (They actually are.)

Getting a bowl of soup at Tim Horton’s and having them give it to you and say, “Sorry. We are out of spoons. Would you like some bread to soak it up?”

Asking for a half tea/lemonade at Tim Horton’s and having them say with disdain, “We don’t have lemonade here.” Sorry for asking. You have a big sign right there that says you do.

Asking for half sweet/unsweet iced tea instead and having them say with disdain, “We can’t do that.” For cripes sake. I’ve gotten that from Tim Horton’s for years.

Having your client say, “I just need to tell you something that has been bothering me. You really talk too much in sessions. You use up too much of my time.” I can’t even be offended because I know it’s true. I’m thinking of the hundreds of clients over the last almost 30 years that have wanted to say that to me but haven’t had the guts.

Now I’m just wondering if watching the Buffalo Bills will be a laugh or a cry. The ups and downs are normal for life. Most are small, but the Bills game will be a ginormous thing here whether they win or lose. I don’t even watch football normally, but I won’t miss a minute of this one.

Fingers crossed!


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Faking Humor

I have to admit that refractory depression, a worldwide pandemic, a local shutdown, a breakup, parenting, financial stress, broken phones, computers, and kitchen ceilings, and being there for really intense pain (for example, a family that lost TWO children in the last TWO months, etc., etc., etc.), I have found myself worn out. My latest cry in the morning is, “I don’t know how to do this another day.” I really don’t. Ask my therapist. I had two sessions with him this week.

One of my jobs is dealing with some higher-ups in a hospital down south. My contact there told me I could use this. “Elasticity limit.” Perfect, perfect description. Like so many others, this rubber band has stretched further than I ever believed possible. But even a rubber band eventually breaks. And it hurts like a **** when it snaps.

So I’m just going to tell dumb jokes.

I went to the dentist and he told me that I needed a crown. I said, “I know, right???”

What do you get when you cross an elephant with a rhinoceros? (Make sure you say this answer out loud or you won’t get it.) “Elifino!”

Did you get that email I sent you with “canned meat” in the subject line? You didn’t? Thank God. Don’t open it. It’s Spam.

What did the left eye say to the right eye? Between you and me, something smells!

I changed that last one to this: What did the left cheek say to the right cheek? Between you and me, something smells! I figured that was a double entendre which I should get extra credit for.

That’s all I got.


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When Travel Was Allowed

A trip down memory lane. Yes, that was a pun. I can’t go to some sunny destination so I thought maybe I would remember a really amazing trip I made in 1991 with my former husband John, my parents, and my aunt. The latter three are now deceased.

It was one of those opportunities that only come once in a lifetime for most of us. Six weeks in an RV traveling around the west. The scenery and experiences were incredible.

It started in Colorado when we went to the Garden of the Gods. We visited a great-aunt there who I had only vaguely heard of. It was beautiful. One day we drove around in the car and experienced sun, rain, and hail, all in one afternoon.

Next stop was the Grand Canyon in Arizona. It’s hard to describe but one time we were sitting on the edge and we saw a rescue helicopter. It looked like a tiny toy. Until we say that, we didn’t even have the perspective of just how massive it was.

One of my lifetime memories occurred there. As I get older, I sometimes wonder if I really remember things factually, but this is my story and I’m sticking to it.

John and I were sitting and watching the sunset. Several other families were doing the same thing. There were a few people who spoke different languages. It was eerily silent as the sun slowly went down. It was breathtaking. Someone started to sing How Great Thou Art. Everyone joined in, some in their native language. Even my atheist husband sang. It still gives me chills to remember it.

Badlands, South Dakota
Mt. Rushmore, South Dakota

The Badlands and Mt. Rushmore in South Dakota did not disappoint. Although I admit Mt. Rushmore took about five minutes to see.

Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming- buffalo

Yellowstone National Park, WY was incredible in its own way. Bubbling puddles of water and mud were everywhere. It was fascinating. We saw the most animal life there. There were deer, elk, coyotes, and buffalo. One buffalo slowly walked down the middle of the road oblivious to anything other than enjoying his leisurely stroll. The cars were backed up for miles in both directions.

By far though, the most memorable moment on the trip had nothing to do with scenery and everything to do with relationships. We were at a camp site and there was a small pond. Mom and I decided to venture out in a canoe. Of course, neither of us had ever been in one before.

I wish I was capable enough to post a video of it. It was classic. Dad was trying to help us with his typical impatience and disgust. You would have thought we were battling Niagara Falls and all he could do was keep yelling at us two numbskulls.

When we finally managed to move the damn thing, Mom starting screaming out of fear. It was hilarious.

Me? Well, I’m recorded asking, “So how do you oar?” And then in true Darcy Thiel form, I hit my head with an oar.

John was a smart ass but I have to say his narration behind the camera was award winning. He tried to answer my question by telling me to slap the water with the oar. Of course I did it and of course that drenched Mom. He then told Mom to hit me in the head with the oar. Now that wasn’t necessary because I had already done that.

Dad finally went from annoyance to laughing when we ran into another canoe so he had to walk all the way around the pond to get to us. Did I mention that the other canoe was just sitting at the water’s edge? It wouldn’t get out of our way.

I know things are not the same in writing, but I hope I’ve shared a smile with you.