What You Hear In The Laundry Room

53d6fcb2a56f4.imageGhosts and whispers,

Furniture being moved in dragon castle,

Arguments,

Butt slaps,

Complaints of running nose,

Fist fights for a piece of bread,

Snoring of a drunk man next door,

Whining of a rusty door in the wind

Plastic mattresses sewn in two by intoxicated gnomes in golden capes

And a virgin elephant deflowered by

The ministry of defense  –

All these and possibly more

Interesting and tragic sounds

One can hear in the white noise

Of a homeless shelter laundry room

With a door open.


the image was copied from https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&source=images&cd=&ved=2ahUKEwiMkYa5jKLlAhX0OX0KHSsxD70QjRx6BAgBEAQ&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.heraldextra.com%2Fmomclick%2Fhome-and-garden%2Fsavvy-organizing%2Fquick-fixes-for-a-messy-laundry-room%2Farticle_d8b9eb97-6cf3-5008-929d-bee5cf6d7b57.html&psig=AOvVaw3vNC2Nedvebzq51wIW9bb3&ust=1571360559155805  and laundered by me. thanks.

Listening

listen-imageThat evening I was contemplating if I should be going to the regular Monday night AA meeting or stay home with my partner and watch Mom. With Mom being a TV series about recovering alcoholics, it and the meeting kind of would be similar experiences: both social, conversational, and recovery aspects are present.

At the beginning I wouldn’t want to hear about it. TV show about addicts in recovery? Give me a break! How much more about recovery can you put out?! I was taking recovery and sobriety very seriously, so making an entertainment out of it didn’t sit right with me. But then my partner kept watching it and as I kept walking in and out of the room, I listened and watched. And the only thing that was getting me annoyed was the wall of constant background laughter. So that’s not so bad, I figured. One day I sat down and watched several episodes in the row. With some good laugh, I took something else out of it. There were good lessons. As one member at my AA meeting said, whoever wrote that show had a very good idea and a very good feel for recovery. I kept watching and liking it.

I always had a hard time with listening. I had so much on my mind, so many things unspoken, ideas, rants, that I felt like I needed to keep running my mouth. As the result, I missed out on a lot of things others have said. You’d guess I wasn’t a big fan of hearing “I’ve told you so” because I heard it too many times! I was told many things thousands of times when I was a kid, and although my parents meant well, I wanted to keep my ears covered for half a day. Thus, I missed on some wisdom through out the years.

It was recovery that taught me to listen. Among other things, it talks about prayer and meditation, and I was well familiar with the first one, so that was not an issue. Yet the second one… My recovery teacher told me in our first meeting together not to talk, but listen, to pay attention to what people say, what’s going on in the room, and then after several meetings share what I had. That was a good a lesson, because I learned some patience, some tact, some care for what to say and what to keep out of respect for others.

I went on listening farther through the days, and I realized there was more to life than constant talking, thinking, moving, and buying. In fact, I already knew it, but I was not giving it enough chance and enough time to become essential in my life. To watch without judging. To listen without interrupting, no matter how wise my input may be. It took me years to learn that sometimes listening is the best form of having a conversation.


the image was copied from https://adimpact.marketing/the-art-of-active-listening/ thanks.

about dogs

d4b18c4eb8fc439969cdebd6e488781aMy Dad sent me something last week after he found it online. Below is my translation of it from Russian.

All rights belong to whoever wrote it. And thank you to them. It definitely taught me something about me and my dog.

The mother-in-law got sick. A week later she died. We took the father-in-law to live with us, thank goodness we got enough room. The mother-in-law had a dog, just a black hairy ugly thing. Took the dog as well, for our own misfortune. The dog chews on everything, bites my kids, being mouthy with me, craps everywhere. We take it for a walk out, but you have to have two people walking it. I contacted dog specialists, paid them to teach me what to do with the dog, how to care for it, – no use. They say it’s easier to just put it down. The father-in-law heard about that, he told us that if the dog dies, it’s him time to go too. So, we left it as it was. The kids go out in the summer wearing long sleeves and pants, hiding the scars from me, pitying the grandpa. By the Fall the dog went completely crazy: biting itself, howling. Turns out, besides everything it also needs to have its nails trimmed. We went to all the places where such service is provided, but nobody takes such angry dogs to service them. Finally, we were recommended one place.

I get the dog to the agency, drag it in. The dog fights back, like it’s possessed. Enters a young woman, tiniest I’ve seen. I tell her of the situation, promise her any money, maybe she could do an anaesthesia while she services the dog (in my mind praying that the dog dies under). The little lady takes the leash out of my hands and asks me to come back at a certain time. I come back as I was told and watch the lady cutting the hair between the toes of a beautiful dog that stands on the table, proud, still, rubber orange ball in its teeth. I just stare at that fine picture. Then the dog looked at me sideways and I recognized it: that was my dog! The lady tells me that she will show me how to brush the dog’s teeth and how to trim the nails. I almost lost it on her. I told he the whole story. She thought about it and said: “You need to understand the dog’s situation. You know that its owner died, but its doesn’t. In the dog’s reasoning, you’ve abducted it from its home in the absence of its owner, and now you keep it by force at your place against its will. It can sense that its other owner, the father-in-law, is upset too. So, since it can’t run away, it’s trying to do everything possible for you to kick it out. Try to talk to it, like a male to a male. Explain the situation. Comfort it.”

I put the dog in the car, took it straight to the old mother-in-law’s house. Opened it up, it’s empty there, smells like no life at all. Told the dog everything. The dog listened, didn’t believe me, but didn’t fight or offend me in any way. I took the dog to the cemetery, showed it the grave. That’s when the mother-in-law’s neighbor came over after visiting family’s graves. We opened a bottle of vodka, drank to their memory, offered some to the dog, had a chat. Suddenly the dog REALIZED IT. Raised its head to the air, and howled. Then it lay down by the grave, and stayed that way, head stuck under its paws. I didn’t rush anything. When the dog was ready, so was I. Together we went to my car.

My family didn’t recognize the dog. When I told them the story, they didn’t believe me. I told them what the little lady taught me, and what came out of it. My son didn’t listen to the end of it, grabbed his jacket and car keys, demands the lady’s address. “What for?” – “Dad, I will marry her!” – “You’re nuts! You didn’t even see her!” – “Dad, if she got into the dog’s situation, do you think she won’t understand me?”. Anyway, three months later they got married. Now I’ve got three grandkids growing up. And the dog? The dog is trustworthy, calm, behaves, listens, incredibly smart old dog, helps to look after the kids. And they brush its teeth at night.


image was copied from https://www.pinterest.com.au/pin/397090892115085574/ thanks.