The Zombies Ate My Brains

Rescuing what might remain of the grey matter.

May you be Safe

Source: Wikipedia

Source: Wikipedia

iris flag

Iris pseudacorus

It’s hardly surprising that Iris is showing up more frequently these days. After all, ’tis the season. Several bloggers are posting wonderful images, or sharing that Iris as one of their favourite flowers.  The other night, Reiner and I took in a walk along the Grindstone Trail at the Royal Botanical Gardens. The “flags” were not yet in bloom. Pity. I love the native species most of all. Some are quite fragrant and in my experience, more exotic looking. In our yard, only one or two plants are in flower at the moment.

I’m particularly fond of the plant mostly because my godmother’s name is Iris. I can recall the day when I learned that I had a godmother. “Like Cinderella?” I said. “Do you mean she’s a fairy godmother?”

Aunt Iris made me feel special. She spoiled me rotten with gifts every Christmas and birthday.  It was she who introduced me to Avon’s scent Rose Geranium.

We were not particularly close as adults. As a matter of fact, until my early thirties, the annual Christmas card exchange was our only contact. After my mother died, though, we visited about once a year. Iris taught me her love of animals, particularly cats. She never married. Her kitties were her life.

She and I lost touch after my last move. I’m ashamed to say I couldn’t tell you if she is alive or dead. Perhaps this post will compel me to pick up the phone, or write her a letter.

Another Iris has gone missing. Many of us follow Iris Greenwald  and her blog Wandering Iris. Some months ago, she wrote that she needed a break from blogging. Fair enough. Blogging energies rise and fall. I didn’t give it a second thought. Yesterday, however, Margaret Rose expressed concern about Iris’ silence. I checked to see if Wandering Iris was still in my feed. Yup, still connected. I checked her last posts and read comments from concerned bloggers. Iris, are you there? Are you OK?

I must confess to feeling torn about this. It’s not a big deal, is it? I mean, it happens all the time. Bloggers post daily, perhaps several times a day, and the they take a break to recharge. Surely we are making mountains out of mole hills?

But what if we are not… what if …

This post… I suppose the reason for this post is to err on the side of caution. To send a message to the universe. A prayer, of sorts. Asking that attention be paid to our Iris, wishing her a safe journey as she wanders.

***   ***   ***

Post Script May 26, 2017.

DENNISON, Iris Lorraine Passed away peacefully April 25, 2017 at Freeport Hospital, with her close friend Annick Charbaret at her side. Daughter of the late Alfred Wesley Dennison and Lillian May Wiltse. Predeceased by sisters Elaine Dennison, Evelyn Jarolimek and Dorothy Shantz, and a brother Willian Alfred Dennison. She is survived by a niece Bonnie Irwin of Stoufville, and great-nephews Sean Irwin and his wife Sooah of Toronto, and Dr. Darryl Irwin also of Toronto. Iris was employed by Inter-City Welding Supplies of Kitchener before her retirement, and had also worked at Snyder’s Furniture of Waterloo and Uniroyal Ltd. of Kitchener. There will be no funeral and cremation has taken place. As an expression of sympathy, donations can be made to the World Wildlife Fund. Iris was a dedicated member of this organization.

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Categories: In Other News

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41 replies

  1. I am always amazed that the outpouring of compassion and concern among bloggers, many of whom only know each other through reading and sharing. I feel like I know some of you so well, and I do miss the ones that have left the building, as it were. Let’s hope it’s just the result of a much needed rest.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. I hope you get in touch with your own Iris, too. Cheers.

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  3. I also worry about bloggers that suddenly go …poof. I hope your friend is safe and just doing the break thing.

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  4. Maggie, it is very hard when bloggers we feel close to disappear. We profess to be here to express our creations, but our online mutual connections can become quite heartfelt, especially if we are people for whom face-to-face interaction doesn’t work for various reasons.

    I do worry about those who disappear, but I take it as my own lesson and practice of loving in the ‘now’ and letting go when hanging on isn’t in my control. Much as I had to do with your adjustments through the months 🎀 and yet here you are again, and I’m appreciating our ‘now’ once more.

    I pray for both your Irises and hope you receive a ‘sign’.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Thanks, Sammy. I am a big believer in signs and it’s been all about “iris” these days.

      I will admit, as I alluded in the post, that my first reaction to reading others’ concerns was less than charitable. What’s the point? I thought. If she’s gone, she’s gone. Because it was easy for me. I did not have as strong a connection to Iris as the others apparently did. The disengagement wasn’t nearly the loss to me as it was for others.

      Then, I put myself in their shoes. What if… And then I remembered something. I can offer her a prayer. Send out a thought, a wish, a prayer to the universal energies. If they are so arranged, then they will resonate with my wishes for her safe journey.

      Liked by 4 people

  5. But it is a big deal. And it shows how big a deal it is to you, Maggie. This post made me smile because who else do ‘we’ have? I love this little bloggy community we have and I love that you are a part of it; just doing your part watching out for the community. I really hope Iris responds if only to say, “Hey! Break time isn’t over yet!”

    Liked by 3 people

  6. I understand the feeling, Maggie, and am often concerned when folks who blog regularly take unannounced breaks. Sometimes, they have been mysteriously dropped from my feed, but when they really vacate their blog, it’s worth investigating. Blogger support and compassion…part of what keeps us coming back here. ❤ Van

    Liked by 1 person

  7. It is hard to get used to. We are so accustomed to the virtual world being an impersonal check in and check out kind of place. It took me awhile to begin to feel what a blogging community is all about. I know now it is a powerful force, but it is still something of an alien environment to me. Thank you, Maggie, for reminding me and for keeping us all on track.

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    • It IS hard to get used to it. I’m still trying to figure out social engagement and rules of conduct and all that jazz. I use those terms loosely because I think all the old face-to-face etiquette rules no longer apply. Rather, they don’t apply in the same way. Thanks for reading and commenting.

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  8. wonderful post – heartfelt, touching and a wonderful reminder to me that we are all connected in ways known and unknown.

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  9. Good to find YOU online again . And I share your love for Irises:-)

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I’m with you. It’s weird. Way weird.

    I’ve had little direct contact with a number of friends I know in person this year just because I fell in a kind of hole at the end of last year and just didn’t have the emotional energy to socialise. It was easier in the blogosphere because I could do it when I felt I could and to whatever extent I felt I could.

    But I’ve started climbing out of that hole and so I sent a message to some of those friends and we are going out Friday night so I can buy them a drink to say “thanks for hanging in there with me”.

    BUT… what if the same happened with my online friendships? What if I just kind of disappeared because I just couldn’t manage it? And what if I came back 6 months later? Something tells me it wouldn’t be as easy as saying “let me buy you a drink”. Half of you might not even be here any more. And I wouldn’t know how to find most of you again either.

    Weird. It’s weird weird weird, I tell you.

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    • I appreciate what you wrote, thanks MOSY. I am going through a same but different scenario. For the last three years I’ve been anchored to my desk while I completed my school work. A close friend moved five hours away. She was my main social outlet both in terms of seeing people and getting some exercise.

      The last couple of years have been difficult and like you, I fell into a hole. Is that a clever way of saying depression? For me, I think so.

      I started to blog and I wrote things like “I’ve found my people!” and I cheered when I read articles that supported the emotional benefits of online friendships.

      And yet…

      Long ago I read a piece that warned of advertisements that lured you by offering a sense of community, of feeling like family, friends. If your car breaks down, if you need a shoulder to cry on, if you need a cup of sugar, are you going to turn to the Big Hardware Store Chain to meet those needs? Hardly. I think there is some overlap here with blogging.

      Of course, our online community is SUPERB for offering the shoulder to cry on. A chance to connect in some meaningful way. But is that a fallacy? Are we not, as writer’s, filtering every syllable through our own biases? How can it be otherwise?

      And then there’s that computer software that acts like a real therapist. People don’t realize that they are having an online discussion with code.

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      • Yes, when you think about it, the whole blogging etiquette thing that gets pushed at you when you first join (and/or the “how to get more followers” thing) is geared toward making you feel you are part of something bigger. What are the key things you should do? Go read and comment on other blogs. Reply to comments on your own blog. And that does what? Creates connections. How real they truly are is the question, I suppose. [shrugs]

        Jackie found Iris on Facebook. Last update was 24 May so maybe things are not so dire. Maybe she just decided she didn’t need/want to blog any more.

        I love Eliza the Computer Therapist. That’s hilarious! 🙂

        Liked by 2 people

        • So she is! I think we can safely say that Iris is present on social media, if not accounted for here on WordPress.

          I gave Eliza a test drive. It didn’t go well.

          Liked by 1 person

        • (1) I am relieved to hear about the May 24th update.

          (2) How real are those connections? Some are very real, but: Not as real as non-virtual. We are presenting, as you say, filtered versions of ourselves. I am convinced that the virtual those who think they know me would be surprised and, some, dismayed, at the opinionated, tactless, immature, (but charming–don’t forget charming) Aspie reality. Just as I would carry my own preferences and prejudices to the non-virtual table.

          And you can’t go out for a cup of coffee with your online pal, or attend a play, or stroll down a street of yard sales, can you? You can’t even hear their laughter. Not the same at all.

          Liked by 1 person

  11. It’s like a neighbor you had gotten to know well has up and moved and you lose touch with them. Darn it. 😦

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  12. I miss Iris Greenwald’s energy too. It was enthusiastic. I hope she is doing well too.

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  13. We do miss our friends, don’t we?

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  14. Oh Vincent’s irises…thank you 🙂

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  15. I feel such a strong affection for some of my blogging friends that if they were to vanish, I’d be verklempt. It’s funny, when one of your links to a post you’ve written more than one or two years ago, I notice all kinds of bloggers in the comments section that have gone “poof.” Is this a transitory place, this blogosphere we seem to all enjoy so much? Even the person who first lured me into blogging – one who had a lovely popular blog of her own – is on what she first called a hiatus but is in fact a cessation.

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    • That’s a fun/not fun observation about the gallery of bloggers who are MIA. More so about the blogger whose temporary break turned permanent.

      I think the key word here is “transitory”. Just like “real” life, eh?

      Thanks for commenting, Barbara!

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    • I think you mentioned this at your place recently when someone sent you the longer link, but “verklempt” is forever stamped for me with humor vs. its opposite, due to Mike Myers. (I have no idea how/if that style youtube link will work in a comment–how does one link in these without showing the danged vid image?)

      But I take your meaning. Don’t disappear, Barbara! or you, either, Maggie!

      Liked by 1 person

      • “Tawk amongst yourselves!” Why I find this as hilarious as I do is a mystery, but I do. You made the link appear just beautifully with no danged vid image. How do you do that? BTW, I got the Watermelon poem book. I approve.

        Liked by 1 person

        • I just used the shortlink (the top highlighted link you see when you click on the < Share icon under the vid) . Don’t think I’d ever tried that before.
          🙄

          Glad you like the book! One would think I’d have its contents memorized, but things that used to stick are now unstuck. I used to know Annabel Lee, My Last Duchess, Ozymandias, Walking By the Woods On a Snowy Evening, a few more (all thanks to the same teacher–Mr. Murken–but they’re gone. 😦

          I still remember bits of my favorite first poem though, from A Young Folks Treasury (I would have been five when I first began reading it):

          Where Did You Come From, Baby Dear?”

          (To my current shame, I LOVED this really sexist one, as well:)
          Seein Things

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