Saturday, January 8, 2022


This is WAY too LONG...but it reveals a bit of why I've not been here for awhile.  I've edited this to have the poems FIRST, since this IS Poetry Friday!

 BALANCE (an acrostic)

Because the times

Are so tough


All we dwell on is the


Concentrate on the light

Embrace the balance.

by Donna JT Smith, 1/2022

Thanks for hosting Poetry Friday, Carol.  I'm going to try to make it for Poetry Fridays this year.

Hmm.  Upon publishing, I found this Draft post from July 8, 2021 that I didn't publish...I wrote it, but lost the energy to hit "publish".  I find it interesting that BALANCE is included here...


For those who are here watching someone leaving.  

This is not the best writing, but I'm tired.  And some days I cannot find the words.  My brain is on overload, making it hard to express myself - at least without becoming an emotional wreck.  

So I continue to try to keep my balance, stay afloat, plant a smile.  

Thank you for indulging me.  I will continue to try to read and comment on other writers', though I feel I am failing at that, and falling behind.


Missing You

   While You are Here


I am walking on our love-worn way

where roses' thorns would


I am strolling on our stony path,

my unheld hand to


I am yearning for calm clarity

and peace of mind to


I am longing for the quietude

as sliding snails might



I am humming to the sky above

enticing birds to


And watching you step off the trail

for golden comfort's



I'll rejoice the day our routes rejoin

to rise before our


But I'll hide for now in willow's shade

my thoughts as leaves on



by Donna JT Smith, 7/8//2021


As many have said they are trying to do this year - or WILL do this year - I am trying to find the good 2022 offers if we look.  I can't say we started it well... but I have not yet lost my temper during the sewer line fiasco. 

On Jan. 4 we had a new liner to the house sewer line started.  It had to cure overnight, so we stayed in a hotel.  It ended up that we spent two nights and three days there, where I also homeschooled the grandchildren as best I could.  When they deemed the line good, we returned. 

The house plumbing worked fine...but our apartment above the garage didn't. That night we had a plumber  until midnight trying unsuccessfully to get water to drain.

The next day (Friday, the 7th) their master technician came out.  (Not to say "I told you so", but I'd mentioned more than once that they needed to make sure the apartment lines were okay and that they weren't bypassing them...I should'a been a plumber) and of course found out that they had indeed lined the pipe right past the plumbing in the apartment. (Sigh) Yup, putting the liner in, they had assumed... let's just say, never assume...and they bypassed the output lines from the apartment. 

They will be here Sunday morning to jackhammer our garage floor removing sections of sewer line and replacing with pipe sections with new openings...We are hoping that by noon on Sunday we will have a functional home again.

So new word for this year.  BALANCE.  There are so many good words out there.  But I think this year I want to balance my life better. 

Here's the thing that's been going on in the background with me...well, one of the things...I've shared some of what I've been going through with my husband's dementia with a few more factor in why it has been difficult to keep writing and interacting with everyone here.  I need more plates - this one is getting too full!  It's important to BALANCE those plates, BTW.

I am going through physical therapy now due to my covid vaccines.  I haven't said much about this, as I don't want to discourage anyone from having their vaccines.  But we believe my son's heart, blood and brain injuries were due to his vaccine.  He's coming back strong, but we almost lost him a few times in this ordeal in September (which started a few days after his vaccine and is otherwise unexplainable by doctors).  

My reaction began with my first dose, but I didn't put the two together because it again is not a typical reaction.  I began with painful muscle spasms of the legs and back when lying down or trying to get out of bed, and I would get a terrible sharp stabbing pain in my hip/back randomly if bending or sitting.  I got my second dose, the pain became even worse and I could no longer turn over in bed at all, and it was a slow, difficult process to get out of bed.  I was seen by a doctor who recommended PT.  When I got to PA I began PT, but couldn't do much because all motion was too painful.  I was researching what this pain could be and praying it wasn't MS or a few other dire things.  

With time, my pain began to be manageable, and no one said this was a vaccine reaction, so I had my booster. 

Oh, I so wish I hadn't.  The pain that had begun to be tolerable, came back with a vengeance - worse than before!  I was trying to find any position that would be comfortable for even a short period of time.  I'd even tried sleeping sitting up at the table, as the pain of getting in and out of bed was unbearable.  I was afraid I was becoming an invalid.  I had to prop my back up so I could lie on my side without using any muscles.  I moved carefully through my any moment a movement could send me into spasms and excruciating pain. The next doctor advised having an epidural of an anti-inflammatory.  I opted to wait it out...hoping that the pain would subside.  I was really suspecting the vaccine by then and went searching for more information. 

It took a while because searching for vaccine stuff is all about getting the vaccine or the typical minor reactions.  But finally I plugged in the right search words and found a site where people were talking about what was going on with me...and they were all suspicious of the vaccine and asking others if they'd had this happen!  Doctors were basically ignoring it. No one wanted to admit that there are some people who should not have the vaccine.  My family is one of them.  Even my daughter who had the J&J vaccine, one dose, began to have the pain in her back.  We never connected the two events, but we did find it strange that we were both having difficulty lying down.

I am again on the "past the worst" and improving side.  I still have some pain, go to PT, and use the TENS unit electrical stim most evenings.  But I'm not on pain meds and I can get out of bed pretty well.  The bouts of random stabbing pain are subsiding again.  I can pick up things from the floor again - carefully.  I am starting to feel like myself.  

I cannot stand and hold a balloon out in front of me...yet.  I cannot walk a block...yet.  I can lose my balance easily.  But I can sit in most chairs comfortably.  I can go up and down stairs.  I can stand long enough to cook a meal.  The feeling in my legs and toes seems to be returning.  I'm not pain free, but almost!  PT is now helping to build up my muscles again, that I haven't been able to use for so long!

So BALANCE seems a good word for me.  I want to regain my physical balance, my emotional balance, my life balance.  I need to start balancing physically and balancing my time for me.  Things have been out of whack for long enough.  I think for two years I've forgotten to slap on more good stuff when the bad started to outweigh it.

Thank you for allowing my rant and slate cleaning.  I am good.  There's been lots of hard times these past two years, but we've made it this far.  I know there will be more ahead, but I hope to keep the balance. 

I've started by signing up for Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong's anthology 101, 201 and 301...for ME.  I need some happy me time to outweigh the times that have weighed me down.

But just so you know, I will not be getting another booster.  I can't.  I think it will literally kill me.


Z is for Zoetic

Good Words Alphabetically: Z is for Zoetic Ah, z end of z month... I'm going to miss writing a poem and drawing every day.  Perhaps I wi...