Holiday stress may be a coverlet

138. i seem like someone else

138. i seem like someone else (Photo credit: rachel a. k.)

Penelope came in with her tinsel sweater hanging around her round shoulders and tinsel in her hair. She was bright and beautifully made up. I swear, you wouldn’t know she was stressed if you met her out and about or even talked with her on the phone. She was designed for holidays, in the best of ways. She innately knew how to bring tinsel out of tacky and into classy. Genes, I tell you. Genes. Despite her nature, however, Penelope, like anything leafy in the elements, she was vulnerable.

She wasn’t very old when she first became ill. Just just in life, at a point of unfolding, her colors still almost fluorescent, not yet muted by age, Penelope got sick.

Penelope was designed for pleasure, yes. Penelope was designed for spending power, yes. Penelope was designed to bring us around her into better perceived experience, yes. But Penelope got sick. And the sickness, as sicknesses often do, came and went. Sometimes, she had more space in her emotions and behaviors for her nature. Sometimes, the sickness found more space, and we around her, were not taken to places of better perceptions. We around her may not have always been conscious about it, but we didn’t like ourselves as much. When Penelope was ill, we felt more selfish. When Penelope wasn’t Penelope, we were more aware of the browning effect of life.


Ack! Such a question we could argue over for years. So many “good” reasons. What was done to her? What choices she made? Sure. We’ll get to those in psychotherapy and try to right the course of her rudder. But her ship isn’t going well with a hole in the hull. Disease is like that. Don’t forget biology.

Penelope came in stressed, “over the holidays,” she thought.

“It’s just the holidays.”

How could Penelope look so good when she was ill? Well she is not a vending machine or a computer card. She is complex and unique and dynamic. She is a changeling, as we all are. We cannot say her tinsel and beauty define her. We give allowance. We are concerned for Penelope. “Stress,” can be the coverlet of much and take caution from her history. Brain health is not a constant for any of us and we have the added benefit of remembering the days of her fluorescence when she first lost her natural powers to spread beauty. We have the benefit of remembering when they came back and then distinguished again. We have the benefit of remembering her effect on us and use ourselves as well as a reference point.

Penelope complains of holiday stress but, although it is tempting, she is wise enough not to stop there. She came in. She came in to lift the coverlet and consider her biology.

Questions: Which coverlets threaten your ability to consider biology in your life? For you and/or those you love, what gives you allowance? Please tell us your story.

Self-Care Tip: Lift the coverlets in your life.

18 thoughts on “Holiday stress may be a coverlet

  1. Can do 3 things: Don’t do all yourself and don’t try to fit in 40 hours of work in a 24 hour day. And take a break now and then despite any deadline. There are few deadlines that are real.

  2. Advanced DNA Testing Sought in Effort to Clear Johnnie Lee Savory of 35-Year-Old Peoria Murders Johnnie Lee Savory (Photo: Center on Wrongful Convictions) PEORIA, Illinois (Nov. 14, 2012) – Center on Wrongful Convictions lawyers filed an expansive motion in the Circuit Court of Peoria County requesting advanced DNA testing that they contend can prove that Johnnie Lee Savory did not commit a 1977 double murder for which he spent more than two-thirds of his life behind bars—from age 14 to age 44—before he was released on parole in 2006. Savory has sought DNA testing since 1998, but Peoria County prosecutors opposed it and the courts denied it on the ground that the requested testing could not yield a result relevant to his claim of actual innocence. Now, however, the technology has advanced to a point where it could be used on previously untestable evidence that has the potential to yield, to quote the CWC motion, “practically irrefutable evidence of Savory’s innocence.” Savory was twice convicted of the murders of siblings James Robinson Jr., 14, and Connie Cooper, 19, who were found stabbed to death in their Peoria home on January 18, 1977. The first conviction rested almost entirely on an alleged confession that the Illinois Appellate Court threw out in 1980 on the ground that the confession had been involuntary. In the face of the Appellate Court’s holding, then-Peoria County State’s Attorney John Barra was quoted by the Peoria Journal Star as saying that without the confession “there is no substantial evidence to tie Savory to the crime or the scene of the crime [and] I don’t know how it would be possible to try him without it.” Barra soon changed his mind, however, deciding to try the case again based on statements attributed to Savory by three of his acquaintances—siblings Ella, Frankie, and Tina Ivy. The Ivys claimed that Savory had made statements to them indicating that he had committed the murders. The retrial was moved to Lake County, where Savory was convicted in 1981. Since then, the Ivy siblings have on various occasions recanted their testimony. Moreover, at a hearing following the second trial, one of the original prosecutors—Assistant State’s Attorney Joseph Gibson—testified that prosecutors had chosen not to present the Ivys’ testimony in 1977 because it was “too shaky.” The only evidence other than the illegally obtained confession and the Ivys’ testimony was inconclusive. It included the alleged murder weapon—a knife found in Savory’s possession bearing then-untestable trace amounts of blood; a pair of bloodstained pants several sizes too large for Savory seized from his home; and several hairs found at the murder scene said to microscopically resemble Savory’s hair. In 1998, shortly after the Illinois General Assembly enacted a law giving convicted defendants the right to test physical evidence relevant to claims of actual innocence, Savory’s then-lawyers filed a motion for DNA testing of the bloodstained pants. The blood was of a type shared by Savory, the victims, and, importantly, Savory’s father, Y.T. Savory, who had suffered an injury consistent with the positioning of the blood and who had testified he used the knife to undo the stitches. The then-attorneys attempted to supplement the motion with a request to test fingernail scrapings from Connie Cooper. The scrapings previously had been thought to be of no evidentiary value. That request was rejected by the Peoria County Circuit Court, and the testing of the pants ultimately was denied by the Illinois Supreme Court, which held that the bloodstain was only “a minor part of the State’s evidence.” Since then, however, advances in DNA technology have made testing of the knife, the hairs, and the fingernail scrapings possible, according to the CWC motion, which contends that, if the testing of those items revealed a common DNA profile that was not Savory’s, the “redundant hits” would be “practically irrefutable evidence of Savory’s innocence and of another man’s guilt.” Two friend-of-the-court briefs were filed in support of the CWC motion—one prepared by lawyers from the law firm of Sidley Austin on behalf of leading Illinois lawyers—including former Governor James R. Thompson, former U.S. Senator Adlai E. Stevenson III, and former U.S. Attorneys Thomas P. Sullivan and Dan K. Webb—and one prepared by lawyers from the law firm of Baker & McKenzie on behalf of men who have been exonerated by DNA testing in Illinois.   Center on Wrongful Convictions DNA Motion Sidley Austin Lawyer Amicus Brief Baker & McKenzie Exonerees Amicus Brief

     Seeking justice for those who were falsely imprisoned for crimes they did not commit.  > > Johnnie Savory 30Years =10,950 days 12,768,000 mins=946,080,000 sec = 120 seasons For some thing he didn’t do  Please sign the petition, help ensure justice in the case of Johnnie Lee Savory. human and civil rights advocate HD+DARCY D= YOU MUST BELIEVE.STANDING UP FOR THE INNOCENT C.E.O /?spref=tw 


  3. Unfortunately, I am sure whether I use coverlets or not, one way I deal with stress is to look at the bigger picture. You tend to find that we evaluate most experiences in relation to other things and nothing has a value of its own, everything is relative!

  4. I take a micro-holiday: do something I love for however short a time. For me that happens to be a visit to a museum or historical house. I have just been through four incredibly stressful months and this worked a treat. It recharged me.

    • dear kind carl, i have indeed been remiss this past month on posting, even my general few/month i had been maintaining! arg! i can’t stand not writing w u and ours. i miss our connections. yes life continues to distract but i’m still here, believe it or not and will hoist onto the seas again soon. hugs

  5. I can’t begin to tell you how much I have missed – and NEEDED!!!! – this blog. So incredibly sad that it’s slowed to a crawl – or less. Happy New Year to my friendtoyourself friends. Miss you all.

      • Ouch. I’m sorry. It has been an emotionally draining month. My husband passed out (probably from exhaustion) in the middle of a grocery store the day after we flew home from CA..the day before Thanksgiving.. ( We were replenishing our refridgerator/freezer because the hurricane had knocked out our power here, while we were in CA, and the kids had to empty it completely). Lots of tests and terror later, he had was declared to be fine except for a concussion. A couple of weeks to heal; a couple of weeks out of the month of Christimas preparations. So, maybe from stress or maybe from exhaustion, jump forward to the Sunday before Christmas and I am out cold in church for ten minutes and taken by ambulance to the hospital. That led to an overnight, into Christmas Eve, stay in the hospital with possible heart problems. Still no complete results (had an ecocardiogram yesterday) but I definitely have Fibromyalgia and should probably eat before going to church. Much frustration and stress. And then one of our best friends just died of pulmonary fibrosis caused by medication, they say, after only two weeks in the hospital. He was so much like my husband that I can’t get his voice or the sight of my husband out on the store floor out of my head. Viewing tomorrow; funeral Friday. And today my son-in-law lost his job – or will be sent to Texas for a year.

        I’m not asking for sympathy. I’m just trying to explain what you called a “well deserved kick”. I’m not usually one to do such things and didn’t intend to. I was just screaming for the friends I got to care so much about for almost two years…and for the support system that was so important in my emotional healing process. I’m just hurting and scared and so very, very sad and I’m finding it hard to be a friend to myself alone.

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