Pressure. Pressure. And more pressure. Daily pressure. Hourly pressure. I forgot what it was like to be plugged in to the world. I have been in a cabin in the woods of the Cuyamaca Mountains for almost four years with no TV, computer and little technology. I read by oil lamp and heated my one-room cabin with a pot belly stove.

I teach. Troubled kids of all variations have been my students. The county refers to them as "at risk" youth. My path to a teaching credential led me through about a dozen facilities dedicated to kids with drug and criminal histories at the tender ages of 14-18. My only outing has been to venture 'down the hill' to teach these kids which I did for two years.

Now I have been jumped back into society with a call from my sick mother telling me she needed me here now. Here is small town Texas, Nacogdoches to be exact-two hours east of Houston's Hobby Airport. From my cabin to my mother's front door took 19 hours of travel. I left Julian at 6:30am and arrived at her door around 1:30am.

Taking care of an aging parent is now the focus of my journey and it is stressful. My mother was up and around two years ago when I saw her last. Now, she barely gets around due to multiple fractures, including a hip and shoulder, high blood pressure and something that is not right about her legs which may require surgery soon. Enough medical info. I just know that I will be getting a bigger dose each day that I am here.

After a few days, I decided to stay here and take care of my mother which could take months or years. Returning to San Diego and continuing to struggle with employment issues, battling Bank of America for my home which is slated for auction and living a life described by my Indian friends by saying, “she walks alone,” has taken the wind out my sails.

I have no mortgage payment or utilities to cover which relieves a lot of stress. Making yet another move (I've moved five times since my home burned in '07) and starting over in a new place with no friends has become far too common but exploring a new place is always stimulating even at the half century mark which I passed in April.

As a new chapter begins in deep east Texas, I put my world in God's hands each morning and only ask for clear directions-which are incoming.

Thanks for listening, I am Sherry D


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