Tag Archive | new age

I Am…who I want to be…

I Am…who I want to be

So I’m sticking with the latest theme…probably because today marks 2 weeks since my Dad died.  Wow…it’s been 2 weeks since I stood by his bedside while his heart ceased beating on its own ~ even though his breathing was being done for him by the ventilator.  It seems like years ago and in the same breath, it seems like just moments ago.

To me, this whole experience has just reinforced my determination to be able to say the above sentence with courage, with happiness and without regrets. Do me a favor, go to the nearest mirror in your home and say to your eyes which stare back,

“I AM who I want to be.”

How do you feel?  Can you say this truthfully?  And are you happy with who you are?

If you felt great with it ~ Woo Hoo!  I am so happy for you!  Now your job is to go spread your sunshine to others!

However, if you have trouble saying the above, then there’s a bit of work to do for you.  I think we are always evolving as we are always learning.  I know that I feel that I am who I want to be, but I always want to improve myself.  I am always reading and trying to learn about how to improve my life, myself and to be able to better hone in on my purpose in life.  I haven’t quite gotten my purpose figured out yet.

Sometimes I just think it’s a work in progress until God/Universe decides to give me another cosmic kick in the rear ~ although quite frankly ~ breast cancer 10 years ago, 7 surgeries in the last 10 years ~ with 3 more to go this year~ my Dad dying and leaving us his business to take care of ~ and other little trinkets that have been passed to me ~ I think are enough.  I just wish I knew more precisely what my purpose is…until I do, I think I’ll continue on the path I’m stepping and see where it takes me.

In the meantime,

I Am…who I want to be…

And I hope you are too!

xo

Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness…

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal,

that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights,

that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

Happy 4th of July to ALL ~ especially to those in the United States of America ~ for whom this quote is especially pertinent since it comes from the US Declaration of Independence which was adopted back in 1776.

I loved this quote because I believe it is everyone’s right…and it is in your own power to exercise your freedom to be whomever you wish to be and to pursue what makes you happy.  This is YOUR LIFE ~ and our time here on Earth is limited.  Why waste YOUR TIME?  Today, amidst the holiday, take a few moments to ask yourself:  Are you pursuing your happiness?  Are you happy with your life?  Do you feel free or under constraint?  If any of those answers are not what you deserve by your rights, then it’s time for a change in your life.  It’s the 2nd part of the year, so there’s plenty of time to begin any adjustments you may need to make.  And if your answers are that you are living your life happily within your rights, then kudos to you!  Keep up the great work and go on to inspire others!

Have the courage to be whomever you are inside…let your inner beauty sparkle and grow ~ let it blossom and be seen by others ~ let your light shine and inspire!

Do what makes you happy, be good to others and enjoy your life.  It is your right.

Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness….

Happy 4th Y’All!

xo

Gratitude 30 ~ Challenge Complete

Today marks my 30th day of the gratitude challenge…and it’s not how I thought it would end at all.  I had thought that I would be sending a card a day to different people (which I did) and hopefully sending love along the way to so many.  Spreading sunshine as it were to all those who touch my life ~ so that they would know how much I appreciated them.  But along the way, Dad passed away and today marks the anniversary of his first week which is hard.  I’m told that the first year is marked by 1sts along the way which become easier as time heals.  Right now, I’m still a bit overwhelmed, but I am grateful that he is at peace.

I enjoyed sending my cards everyday which was so easy because there’s always someone to thank and to be grateful for if you take a moment to just look at your life.  I’ve learned and shared that we only have today in which to make a difference in someone else’s life.  We only have today to tell those whom we appreciate, whom we love, whom we care about ~ how much they truly mean to us.

I loved hearing the excitement in their voices when the card recipients called me ~ telling me over and over how much I made their day.  Going out to the mailbox, expecting junk mail and bills and finding a personalized enveloped tucked inside with a heartfelt message from me…reading how much they mean to me, how much they are loved, how important they are ~ my personalized message and sometimes even pictures ~ I know for me, with the passing of my Dad and my last surgery, I received many heartfelt, personalized cards which never failed to make me smile, even when I was so very sad.

Cards have a special way of making others feel good ~ spreading sunshine ~ making the world a brighter place.  And that’s what I’m all about…I want everyone to know how special they are ~ and I want to do it easily, conveniently and cost-effectively which is why I love SendOutCards…

Regrets are for a lifetime and I don’t want any regrets.  I’ve found that what you give out, you receive in abundance…So if I can offer you any wisdom from my 30 days, let it be this:

Appreciate…Love…Forgive…Love…Smile…Love…Cherish…Love…

Remember…Love…Care…Love…Repeat…

 www.socgratitude.com

Sponsor # 126830


Gratitude Day 27 ~ Relish Life…

Journey. Let us relish life as we live it, find joy in the journey,

and share our love with friends and family.

One day each of us will run out of tomorrows. Thomas S. Monson

We are all on this journey called life…together or apart, our journey doesn’t end as I believe we carry our dreams and memories with us so that even if we are far apart in death, we are close together in heart.  I am sad that my Dad has passed and as I awoke this morning, I had to think of what day it is…and then it hit me, it’s the first Monday without Dad and it brought tears to my eyes ~ because that is how he would have thought…and I am so much like him at times.

He counted the days, the times, the special moments ~ so many people have told me how he remembered their birthdays, anniversaries and special days and always called them ~ spreading good cheer.  He never wrote down any of these dates, he had them all in his head.  Somehow cataloged ~ and he could tell you all about their families, the relationships and how they intertwined.  He was a secret keeper I know, he knew others’ family secrets, but never broke that bond of silence.  I never appreciated this with enthusiasm until now and surely from the other side, he’s laughing now that I have realized and am appreciating who he was.

He didn’t know he was running out of his tomorrows ~ a lesson for us all.  The sadness comes in waves as do the tears and giggles of some of the memories I have of him.  I don’t want to be sad all the time because I’m a ‘glass is half full’ type of gal.

So I’m ending on a high note ~ this song is for you Dad…

You Can Call Me Al ~ uq-gYOrU8bA

I am grateful for Al.

xo

Gratitude Day 26 ~ Strength

Strength. Turn your face to the sun and shadows fall behind you.

We need strength now as we transition to getting used to not rushing to the hospital everyday, not worrying that every text or phone call could be ‘the one’ and learning to live without Dad.  There has been the utmost outpouring of support, stories and loving thoughts/prayers given to us which helps us continue to take the baby steps required in planning all that is needed for his memorial service etc.  But it’s hard…and unless you’ve experienced this part of growing up, you simply have no idea what you are missing…and quite frankly, stay that way please.

I liked this card because of Strength ~ but also because of turning towards the Sun ~ as I think we have a choice in how to remember those whom we loved.  You can turn towards the Sun and remember the Good in them or you can turn away and remember the sad, bad memories in the shadows.

Nobody is perfect (although secretly I think Dad thought he was!) ~ and so it is in truth that I say that I am choosing to remember the good times, the good memories and allow the bad ones to fall by the wayside, to exit the way many memories have gone via my chemo brain.  I figure I will keep my strength from faltering by basking in the beautiful memories of those around me, allowing their stories to bathe me in the love I had for my Dad.

Looking to the sun, allowing the shadows to fall behind…I think it’s the best way to be everyday.

Don’t you?

Thank you all for sharing your stories with me!

xo

Gratitude Day 25 ~ Soldiering On

We understand death for the first time

when he puts his hand upon one whom we love. Madame de Stael

I can’t sleep.  It’s 4am and I can’t stop listing in my head all that I need to do so I’m up.  All is quiet in my home, the coffee machine whispers, breaking the silence as I reach down to pet each of our cats who bring me so much joy and comfort.  I need to get so much done this morning…bills to pay for my family, bills for my parents, emails to write, a funeral to coordinate, my own business to run, my Dad’s business to run ~ funeral outfits for everyone ~ my head spins with all that I need to do.

So I do what I was ‘trained’ to do…I soldier on.  Being the daughter of a Navy man, I was trained (his vocabulary ~ certainly not the word I would choose for myself) from age 11 to work in my Dad’s office and to take care of things.  It is where I am most comfortable and I guess it’s how I am dealing with the grief that at times simply overwhelms me.   My friend KAngel remarked that we all grieve in different ways and I can see that clearly now.  My Mom and AAngel are grieving differently as well.  We are all incubated in our grieving and yet connected.  I hope we don’t lose that connection even though I see that it is tenuous as times.

I am grateful for my Dad’s insistence that I learn how to do what needs to be done without fanfare…I feel like it’s my contribution to my family to make things easier at this time.  It’s my way of grieving because I need to get done what needs to be done now.  It’s like a race for me and I know me…I am like my Dad, the Energizer Bunny…I’ll keep going and going until I fall apart and pass the torch of work onto whomever picks it up.  I need to do this now before I’m not able to help.

Thinking back, it’s how I deal with many aspects of my life ~ I just keep going ~ baby steps forward.  With the cancer and surgeries that I’ve endured, I just keep going ~ stopping occasionally to stomp my foot in sadness and a flood of “why me?” before picking myself back up to keep going for myself, my family and with the inner need to soldier on.

Before this, I don’t think I really ‘got’ what the death of a loved one means ~ and I’m still not quite sure that I do as I think this is going to be a process ~ yet again, Dad is training me from beyond.  I’m on autopilot nowadays, but in the quiet of the mornings, all alone, I allow myself the indulgence of communicating with him.  Right now, I can trick my mind into thinking he’s on vacation as I play worker bee in his office.  It’s easy because I’ve done it before ~ but this morning, I can feel his love around me.  I can remember how he looked when he passed and I know that the outer shell of that man is gone forever, but his spirit is still alive and kicking all around me.

And for that, this lil’ soldier is so grateful.

xo

Gratitude Day 24 ~ Au revoir mon pere

Our loved ones, no longer with us, leave footprints in our hearts.

Impressions of kind acts, loving words & happy memories.

These prints build a path for us to follow which always lead to warmer places and brighter days.

My Dad passed away yesterday afternoon.  The sun was shining, his room was filled with friends and his heart simply stopped beating…in a matter of moments, his heart rate dropped and ceased beating.  He was surrounded by love, held tight by his girls ~ my Mom, AAngel and me…and I believe he knew it.  It was an amazing mix of people who shared his last moments with us and knowing Dad, it wasn’t just on a whim that he ‘orchestrated’ it.

The night before, we had seen him as his condition had worsened.  AAngel and Mom had stood vigil all day with him during my son’s graduation.  Mom stayed by his side all night in the hospital, AAngel took the morning shift to let Mom go home to shower and sleep and I took the afternoon shift.  Due to his condition, he had a nurse in the room at all times watching the monitors of the many machines that were working hard to keep his body alive.  We were very blessed to have Anita as his nurse for the last two days as she was so caring to him and to us.  It was like we had known her forever and she was a part of our family.

Dad’s stepsisters came to visit during the changing of the guard ~ AAngel and me ~ and stayed with us for a bit.  It was good to see them as we hadn’t seen them in a long time.  It was nice for him to have some company and this morning I am grateful that they were there to see him on his last day.

Around 3:30, due to the extreme heat wave that we are having, suddenly all of the lights and machines went out in the hospital.  Anita and I had been chatting when everything stopped and it took me a moment to realize that the ventilator which was helping him to breathe had stopped as well.  But Anita was already up, ready to manually keep him breathing when the generator kicked in and all of his machines sprung to life again.   It probably was only a matter of 10 – 15 seconds, but it seemed like a few minutes and I remember feeling so scared because in that instant I realized just how much those machines meant to him.

Two friends of Dad’s, GAngel and JAngel came in to visit him as did his childhood next door neighbor with whom he is still friends BAngel and his wife JAngel who met Dad at age 7.  Friends of 36 years (to the day ~ GAngel met Dad on the Summer Solstice 36 years ago) and friends of 70+ years together in the same room ~ connected by the friendship of the same man.  Mom and AAngel came in after awhile.  It was crowded in Dad’s room, but I don’t think anyone minded.  I was recounting the story of the electrical outage and explaining how none of them could really fathom how scary it was except Anita and me.  We were all talking and reminiscing about Dad.

Anita, ever careful in her quiet but efficient way of nursing, was up by Dad’s bedside checking machines and when I looked at her, she slightly nodded.  Suddenly we realized that Dad’s heartbeat was diminishing…up in a flash, we were all by his bedside so that when it stopped beating, he was surrounded by love.  And then it happened again, all of the power in the hospital stopped for a few seconds and then restarted by the generator.  Dad’s heartbeat resumed for a few moments again, only to quiet again and cease.

He did it his way.  He always did it his way ~ and he made sure that he did it with the panache of the electricity going out ~ not once but twice.  Dad was a man who loved life with a bit of flair ~ how else could he have everyone remembering the day he passed and how he passed?  The summer solstice is so fitting for him since summer was his favorite season…he adored going to the beach and we grew up at the beach because of it.

He never left his hometown and he still lived in his childhood home which he always said he would leave feet first.  And he did.

I loved this card because I want to celebrate his life, celebrate his good, celebrate the way he changed others’ lives.  I am mourning the loss of my Dad, but I am happy that he is painfree, hopefully playing fetch with our Labrador Chienne, our cat Zoe and his beloved Kelsey Anne (my sister’s special dog).  I am sure he’s looking down upon us all and will help in the coming weeks as we transition to learning to live without him here on Earth.

I know his voice, his advice and his acts of kindness will follow me all the days of my life.  Surely I will feel his spirit and help when I need it most.