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Friendship Lifts Us

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“The circles of women around us

weave invisible nets of love

that carry us when we’re weak

and sing with us when we are strong.”

A long time friend’s Mom passed away recently.  As the text went out to all the girls, letting us know, we rallied as we often do in the face of sadness.  Exactly one month later, we received the news that her Dad passed away.  Both parents in such a short period of time is devastating to me.  I can’t even imagine her pain and sadness.

We all feel her pain for we have parents too.  Some of us still have parents living and others have mourned the loss of our parents’ demises in all different forms.  But what keeps us together is the bond of friendship we share.

I find it interesting that the group who surrounds my friend is a mixture of girls from high school, but not all of us were close in high school.  But the willingness to be there for someone else in their time of need supersedes whatever our relationships once were (and there is even someone in the group who didn’t really know her, but yet is a staunch supporter of her in this time of need because she understands how it feels).

How much of a blessing is that?

So today I ask that you reach out, gather around, bond and connect with people.  Shine your heartlights.  Hold hands in friendship.  Be still.  Be kind.  Listen with an open heart.  Be the loving souls you are please.  I think our world could use a bit more of that everyday.

Shine On!

xo

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Broken And Fixed

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I wish I could remember where I found this posted on Facebook, but the story touched me in such a way that I had to share it with you.  Read on…

I was in Dollar Tree last night and there was a lady and two kids behind me in the LONG line. One was a big kid, one was a toddler. The bigger one had a pack of glow sticks and the baby was screaming for them so the Mom opened the pack and gave him one, which stopped his tears. He walked around with it smiling, but then the bigger boy took it and the baby started screaming again. Just as the Mom was about to fuss at the older child, he bent the glow sticks and handed it back to the baby. As we walked outside at the same time, the baby noticed that the stick was now glowing and his brother said “I had to break it so you could get the full effect from it.” I almost ran because l could hear God saying to me, “I had to break you too show you why I created you. You had to go through it so you could fulfill your purpose.” That little baby was happy just swinging that “unbroken” glow sticks around in the air because he didn’t understand what it was created to do which was “glow.” There are some people who will be content just “being” but some of us that God has chosen, we have to be “broken.” We have to get sick. We have to lose a job. We have to find our own path. We go through divorce. We have to bury our spouse, parents, best friend, or our child because, in those moments of desperation, God is breaking us but when the breaking is done, then we will be able to see the reason for which we were created. Trust me, I do not look like what I have been through.
You are loved, you are valuable, and you have a purpose.

Dear friends, when you’re asking that eternal question of Why?, perhaps you can find some relief in the story above and feel more at peace.  We see your heartlights!

Shine On!

xo

Take A Lesson From Alzheimer’s And Dementia

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I’m a big proponent of passing along what I’ve learned through my various experiences.  Not to preach, but to connect with others who are enduring similar situations.  My blog is called The Presents of Presence which is all about being in the moment.  But as we all can attest, not every moment feels like a gift.  Sometimes we feel like we’ve been kicked instead.

With Alzheimer’s and Dementia, the lesson for me is clearly meant for my blog.  It’s in being in the present and finding the good in the now.  Finding the gift in connecting with others, no matter how brief it is, no matter how small it feels.

In my experience with my loved ones, I’ve learned that we can relax and just be and that this is, for the most part, how they now live their lives.  There’s almost like an amnesia from the dark past experiences that evaporates.  It is almost with childish simplicity that they live with the disease.  There’s not a lot of wondering what’s next or what happened before this very moment, except when sundowners hits.  It’s a focus on what’s right here that counts.  They live most fully in the now without reservation.

Think about that for a moment.  Can you wrap your mind around that?

What that means is no holding onto grudges, no revisiting conversations, no worrying about the future, no obsessing over the past, no self-criticism, no blaming someone else, I could go on and on.

It’s about, acceptance for the here and now in whatever form it takes.

I admire the people I know who have the disease for the courage to accept and be with the present at all times as I think that would be a hardship for many of us.  Yet, by their freedom, they are role models for us all.  Yes, I understand that they didn’t choose this disease.  Yes, I understand how heartbreaking it is when our loved ones have it.  But there’s a choice to mourn the loss by the disease or to find the positive in accepting what we deem unacceptable with the disease.

For me, I’ve got to find the positive and if that means, I have to change my way of thinking to expand it to gratitude for learning how to really find The Presents of Presence in every part of life’s journey and not just give it lip service, then so be it.

Shine On!

xo

 

Signs Our Loved Ones Are Still With Us

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Six years ago today is the anniversary of my Dad’s passing away.  I remember the day as if it were yesterday and I have written about it numerous times on my blog, like here and here  and here in case you’re interested.  But yesterday, something happened that was so unusual, I had to write about it.

While I would love to show you the video footage, I can’t upload it on YouTube in order to share it, so the still photos will have to suffice for now.  Please know that if you are skeptical, I understand.  But as time goes by, there has been enough synchronicity for me to believe that departed soul energy exists and this is just added proof for me.

When my dad died, all of the power went out on a warm, but not hot, Summer Solstice.  So I have known all along that he reaches out via electrical energy.  My back porch light (programmed to be on dusk till dawn) has stayed on steadily for the past two weeks.  At first, I thought it was an electrical problem, but I believe it is my Dad’s message for me.  I am still here, around you and your family.

I’m grateful that Marcus, from Alcaide’s Paranormal Truth, came over yesterday afternoon with his energy meter (I’m sorry, I don’t know the proper word for the machine, MEL – 8704R-REM-ATDD), which reads unseen paranormal energy.  We set it on the table along with a photo of my Dad which is one of my favorites.  The meter read 0.00 for a long time.  I videotaped it persistently at 0.00 until Marcus suggested I speak to my Dad.

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So I did.  I asked him to let me know that it is he who I feel still around me so many years later.  Suddenly it jumped to read 9.1.  I was ecstatic!  Hi Daddy!  Thank you!IMG_3320_Moment (2)

The readings jumped all over the place from small numbers 3.3, 4.5, 10.9 to the highest at 11.2.  I only took screen shots of some of the changes in the meter because I didn’t want to bore you.  But here’s the proof.

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There wasn’t a lot of rhyme or reason to how they jumped except when I was speaking to my Dad and for me, therein lies the confirmation.  Proof that I could see, feel and mark his presence in a way that felt right to me.

Whether you believe in ghosts and/or departed loved ones who return to be with their living relatives is your choice.  For me, it just feels comforting to know that energetically he’s still here I think with me, being my Dad and watching over me and my family.

Have you ever had similar experiences?  Do you believe that our departed loves ones can energetically be around us?

Shine On!

xo

 

 

 

Rest in Peace – Molly’s Movement

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My heartfelt sadness goes out to Joey Daley as his mom Molly passed away recently.  If you are a caregiver or have a loved one with Alzheimer’s or Dementia, please take a few moments to watch the video below and listen to Joey.  Molly had Lewy Body Dementia for ten years and through Joey’s chronicles, he has shown us Molly’s true courage and his as well.

There are so many inspiring people in our world.  Thank you Joey and Molly for being you!  A mother’s love and support never die and they stay with us forever.

Shine On!

xo

My Hometown

My Hometown

I’m a Jersey Girl in case you didn’t know.  At one point in my life, Bruce Springsteen and his family were actually living in my hometown.  I’ve met him and talked with him over the years.  I’ve seen him play locally numerous times and I was even at a spontaneous birthday party he had at a local restaurant where he gave an impromptu mini concert with his band and danced with his Mom on the dance floor.  That was such a memorable night!

What I find special about Bruce is how he weaves his stories through his music in a way that touches so many of us.  Around town, he didn’t display his celebrity status.  He was just Bruce, without pretensions which is such a lovely way to be.

So when he played at the Tony Awards, the man playing the piano was so real to me.  While I didn’t grow up in his hometown, the nostalgia in which he paints it was real to me as I know his town too.

If you care to take a listen, maybe this clip will remind you of the beauty of your hometown as you take a walk down your memory lane along the streets of your childhood.

Shine On!

xo

 

Life Is In The Little Things We Do

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I am not a person who goes to Starbucks very often.  That being said, the other day it was warm out and I decided to treat myself so I pulled into the drive thru of a local Starbucks for a mocha frappuccino.

In our busy world of fast food, there’s a routine that’s fairly consistent.  We pull up to speak our order to the person behind the screen.  Then we pull around to the window, pay for our order, then wait in line to pull to the next window to receive what we’ve ordered.

Easy.  Routine.  Expected.

So when I pulled up to order at the Starbucks screen I heard:

“Good afternoon.  Welcome to Starbucks.  How may I begin your order today?”

At first I was a bit astonished because I’m so used to the voice at the other end of the screen being a bit frazzled and curt.  Yet her voice was soothing, patient and happy.

“Good afternoon!  I’d like a medium (or whatever you call that size) mocha frappuccino please and that’s it.”

“Of course.  What a perfect treat for a sunny day!  Please pull around to the window.”

“Ok, thank you.”

I put my car into drive and moved to the window.  As I rolled up to the Starbucks’ window, the glass slid open and a young woman (probably in her early 20’s) leaned out and smiled at me.  She had blonde and purple hair with a floral top on.

“Hi,” she beamed at me with a smile.

“Hi,” I answered back, expecting that she would immediately tell me how much I owed for the order and we’d move on.  I mean, this is a drive thru and people are always in a hurry these days.

“Excuse me for a moment,” and she turned away to take the order from the next car in line, just as politely as she had taken mine.  Then she turned back to me.

“How are you?”

I stammered.  I mean, this wasn’t what I was expecting.  Was this a social call?

“I’m doing ok thank you.  How are you?”

“I’m doing great today  The sun is shining and all is well.”

“That’s terrific.  I like the way you’re thinking.  You’re right.  It is a beautiful day out.”

“Excuse me again,” she said as she took the next order.  I watched her speak with a smile  to the next person in line.  It struck me that she really liked her job.

She turned back to me and continued to chat.  I was still stunned that we were continuing to have this casual conversation and she still hadn’t told me how much I owed for my order.  She was completely relaxed even though there were cars behind me and the place was obviously busy.  I was holding the bills in my hand because I didn’t know how much the drink was.  I raised my hand to show her the money in hopes that she’d tell me how much I owed and I could pay for my order.

Then it struck me.  What’s up with me?  I wasn’t in a hurry and yet here I was, chomping at the bit (horse vocab intended) to get on with it.  To pay, to receive and to move out of the way so that the next car could pull up to get their order.  I was not really in a rush and yet, here I was acting like I was because I was so attuned to the fast food mentality of rushing through life.  Yet, here was someone who was completely at ease in a stressful situation and I was not.

She smiled at me again and continued to talk as if we were old friends.  Was I the only one aware that the minutes were ticking by?  We were both looking at each other and it was then that I realized that we were connecting as humans and not as mechanical robots.  She took one more order and then turned back to me.

“Your order comes to $,” she finally said, smiling even more.

I counted out the bills and handed them over to her.  She handed the change back to me still smiling.

“I’m sorry I was frazzled when I pulled up to the window.  I wasn’t expecting us to have a conversation.  It’s usually not done that way.”

“I know.  You did look a bit frazzled but look, now you’re more relaxed.”

Smiling a huge grin, I laughed as she handed me the drink.

“You’re right.  Thank you for making my day brighter.”

“You’re so welcome.  I’m glad we connected.  I hope you have a lovely day.  Enjoy your treat!”

I reached back into my wallet and handed her a tip.

“Thank you for your unique way of being.  This was really lovely.”

“You are so welcome.  You’re not the first person to be caught off guard when I talk with them.  I find it makes the job more fun to meet everyone and to connect with them, even if only for a few minutes.  I hope it makes someone else’s day better when they feel that I really see them and we connect.  You never know what’s going on with anyone, but I find that trying to brighten someone’s day makes all the difference.”

“Well, you certainly brightened mine.  Thank you for your kindness.”

We both smiled again and I waved to her as I pulled away, still aware of the line of cars behind me.  Yet, the funny thing was that none were beeping.  They seemed to all be patiently waiting their turns.  Perhaps it was because they knew that the girl behind the counter would be giving each of them her full attention for a few moments of connection.

As I drove away, sipping that delicious concoction, it tasted even better.  I opened the sunroof and let in the wind and sunshine.  I turned up the volume as the music enveloped my soul.

I silently thanked that purple-haired angel at Starbucks for her sweet reminder.

Connections make all the difference.

Shine On!

xo