Tag Archive | reiki

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.

Gratitude Day 23 ~ Crystal Ball

Please indulge me today with a longer post because it’s the beginning of the end of a chapter in our family as well ~ in our 3rd week in ICU with not much change, we are unsure of the future.  I have unashamedly wished often over the last few days for a glimpse at a crystal ball.  I am a planner and I like to KNOW ~ I can usually go with the flow, but now I find I am anxious for the future for my family.

I awoke this morning remembering how as a girl in school, we would happily make those paper chain links of green and red and put them around the classroom.  Everyday we would cut off a link to symbolize one day closer to Christmas vacation.  It occurred to me that I am doing the opposite now with my Dad ~ I beg to add one of those green or red slips of paper so that we can have MORE TIME with him.

Of all the material goods in the world, all that many strive for ~ the one thing that we truly long for is more time…when it comes down to it, we want more time here.  But this thought process isn’t serving me now and I’ve stopped begging for God/Universe to give us more time with my Dad.  I’m reminded of my favorite quote from Dr. Wayne Dyer, “When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change,” and I am shifting my thought process.

I believe in Heaven and I once dreamt that I died and went to Heaven.  I can still recall the dream as it was so vivid.  I was in my 20’s at the time and the dream has served me well as I’ve never been afraid to die ~ sad to leave my family and friends here on Earth, but never afraid to experience the wonders of the beautiful Heaven that I experienced in my dream.

So when I change the way I look at what’s happening, I can be happy that my Dad will experience Heaven soon ~ where there’s no pain, only love and where he’ll wait for us until it’s our turn.   When I think of him being released from his Earthly body that’s breaking down, I can smile, knowing that his spirit lives on and can be free of the bonds of his physical body.

But it’s hard because I don’t want to grow up now.  I want to be a Daddy’s girl forever and if my Daddy isn’t here, then I’m not a girl anymore.  Selfish I know, but it’s how I feel this morning.  I wrestle with how I feel about his imminent passing ~ I want him to be peaceful and I want him here and I can’t have both.

So I will tell you that I am Grateful for Time I’ve already had with him…Grateful that this transition has been slow moving so that we 3, AAngel, Mom and me could bond and move together through it.  I am Grateful For Mother’s Day when we sat and talked for a few hours as it’s the last great memory I had of him.  I am Grateful that he came to visit me when I was just out of the hospital…and that we both showed patience and love that day.

I don’t know what today will bring and I’ve given up the crystal ball.  Plans out the window, I’m not asking for knowledge that’s not mine to know now ~ I’m going with the flow today.  So when you don’t think you can give up the way you are thinking, believe me ~ You Can… because if you let it…

Shift Happens.

xo

Gratitude Day 21 ~ my thoughts are with you

my thoughts are with you

Today’s card is a picture that my friend JAngel sent me this morning ~ I added “my thoughts are with you” because it’s been a recurring theme in my life these days.  I’ve been surrounded by angels helping me and my family on this journey ~ many repeating the above as a mantra.

I say the same quote to my Dad as I keep waking up early in the mornings, hours before the alarm begins to beep.  In the quiet of early morning, I find myself chatting with my Dad and feeling as if he can hear me…I imagine his spirit leaving his body to visit each of us as the machines rhythmically pump oxygen into his body to keep him alive.  Although he’s not ‘answering me’, I feel a peace settle into my heart as I tell him how I feel.  As I count my blessings and memories of him, I feel my heart grow and peace surround me.  I want him to know how I feel ~ and I don’t hold back as it isn’t all good, but certainly isn’t all bad either.  I’ve forgiven him for what I deemed as his foibles…I don’t judge anymore…I just found love ~ simple, pure and encompassing love for him as a whole.

A complicated man is my Dad.  And if truth be told, I think we are all complicated ~ with different facets of ourselves.  We wear various hats for different people as I think we have purposes in each others’ lives.  If my Dad hadn’t done his job perfectly in my life, I wouldn’t be where I am now and who I am now ~ and for that, I am eternally grateful.  Growing up, I was unable to see that, but I can now and I am blessed to be able to see and understand more about Dad.

I held anger and resentment in my life and I am finally free of it.  It’s been difficult to hold onto those things in my life that weren’t serving me, but I did it for so long that I never realized the heaviness inside of me.  If I can give you a piece of my experience, it is to embrace only loving memories and let go of anything else that doesn’t serve a loving purpose ~ for yourself, your family, your friends and for your life.

My Dad is human, with foibles as we all are…but I embrace the love that I know he has for me and I for him.  I have watched and listened as so many have come forward to tell me about the hats he wore with them, and it’s been like feeling hugs from Dad with each and every story and anecdote.

I continue in my state of gratefulness ~ grateful that I awoke early enough to have a few moments of peace before the hustle and bustle of the day begins.  Counting my blessings, being thankful for all of the Angels in my life (thanks to JAngel for coming to visit from faraway) and thanks to LAngel for journeying with me yesterday to NYC.  Angels continue to pop into our lives unexpectedly to help us on this journey with Dad.  JGAngel simply appeared to lend a hand on Saturday for me as well ~ I feel like I am surrounded by Fairy Godparents left and right…all to make the transition easier to bear.

Sometimes I think Dad has a hand in this transition ~ helping us to accept what will happen.

xo

Gratitude Day 20 ~ Back to the Light

Sometimes our hearts get tangled and our souls a little off-kilter

friends and family can set us right

and help guide us back to the light. Sera Christann

I write today’s post with such heartfelt gratitude for so many people, many that I didn’t know previously, who have prayed for us, helped us behind the scenes and have sent their loving messages to our family.  The outpouring of love is a bit overwhelming at times as is the entire situation.  I truly feel so blessed as does my family.

We are not out of the woods yet by any stretch with my Dad’s health situation.  The amazing doctors and nurses continue to try new and innovative ways to regain his health.  I have said it before, we are on a seesaw as he is now 14 days in the ICU ~ and at times, his situation improves and we go up ~ and then it declines and we go down.

Our souls and hearts have been mangled lately with the ups and downs ~ hoping against hope, believing and yet worried…holding on to that Beacon of Hope and trying to grasp the faith of a mustard seed…and all the while, we’ve been surrounded by angels who continue to pour their love around us, sheltering us and helping to guide us as we navigate these difficult waters.

And today, I am so grateful for you all ~ and I want you to know how much it means to us to get your emails, texts, phone calls, FB messages and even comments on my blog…your hearts infuse us with light, hope and strength so that we can continue to help Dad and Mom as we continue on this journey.

With loving gratitude always,

xo

Gratitude Day 19 ~ Don’t Stop Believing…

Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life. -Bethold Auerbach

I am so grateful for music in my life.  I love to hear all types of music.  For me, hearing a certain song can place me right back to a moment in time which reminds me of that song.  I also find that sometimes, certain songs which are not popular come on the radio and I feel like they are messages from Spirit/God/Universe.  Did I just make you think I’m losing it?  Please don’t be frightened, but it’s true…

As I pulled into the hospital parking lot the other day, one of my favorites came on the radio ~ Don’t Stop Believing By Journey ~ and of course, I knew what it meant.  I had raced from my home 45 minutes away to get there quickly as I’d been told that my Dad only had hours to live.  The radio was on for noise as my brain was intent on simply getting there in one piece and in time to see him before he passed.  I was in a tizzy, but as I pulled into the lot, I heard my song and was struck by the synchronicity of the moment…I had finally begun to relax while driving around the parking lot because I’d made it in record time and still hadn’t gotten a phone call from my sister which was a great sign that meant he was still alive.  And that’s when I heard Don’t Stop Believing…

For the man who only had hours to live, he is still here days later…

and for that, I’m so very grateful. 

Happy Father’s Day Dad…so glad you’ve made it through another day!

Don’t Stop Believing!

xo

Gratitude Day 17 ~ A Beacon of Hope

Appreciation is the highest form of prayer,

for it acknowledges the presence of good

wherever you shine the light of your thankful thoughts.
-Alan Cohen

My Mom shared yesterday that she was begging God to let my Dad live.  She said she was didn’t mean to beg Him, but she simply couldn’t just pray as she cannot begin to imagine her life without my Dad.  She has been through so much in the last 2 weeks ~ standing like a Beacon of Hope next to his bed all night Thursday night, comforting him when he awakened calling for her.  In her stoic way, she never lets on to him that there is anything but hope there and that he will get better.  Even when he thinks he is dying and verbalizes it, she keeps her Beacon of Hope shining brightly.  It’s all we have at this point.

Our thankful thoughts are our Beacon of Hope and we have many good reasons to be thankful.  It’s hard to think about the possibility of my Dad passing without feeling bereft even though I’ve been blessed to have him in my life for so many years.   I know from experience that there are many others who have not been blessed with parents as long as AAngel and I have and I continue to be thankful in prayer for all that has been given to us.

Truthfully, I don’t want my Dad to pass, but I don’t want him to live uncomfortably either.  But then, it’s not my choice is it?  All I can do is continue to be thankful and appreciative for every little and big thing and for every person who is in our lives.  I am consciously trusting in God/Universe that what is supposed to happen, happens and that my family and I endure with love.

Family crises’ can bring people closer or tear them apart ~ and as I gratefully write that we three women have bonded together in order to be strong Beacons of Hope and Love to a man who has been Husband, Father and PITA to us all (he’s not a Saint you know ~ and I am a bit irreverent) I know that the above quote fits perfectly today.

Because we were called to the hospital early yesterday morning, I wasn’t able to write my post for the day.  In fact, when I awoke early this morning, I wasn’t sure of what I was going to write ~ and then, there it was ~ a quote in my email from a fellow blogger ~ LadyRomp ~ and the above quote and posting took shape.  So a heartfelt thanks to Kim @ a-message-from-the-creator-3-2 for her inspiring messages and quotes.

Use your thoughts wisely, be grateful, show your appreciation to your family, friends, loved ones.

Use the Gift of Today ~ The Presents of Presence that is yours.

Be the Beacon of Hope and Gratefulness

Shine your Love Brightly Today.

xo

Gratitude Day 15 ~ Grateful for Life

“Life is an opportunity, benefit from it.
Life is beauty, admire it.
Life is a dream, realize it.
 Life is a challenge, meet it.
Life is a duty, complete it.
Life is a game, play it.
Life is a promise, fulfill it.
Life is sorrow, overcome it.
Life is a song, sing it.
Life is a struggle, accept it.
Life is a tragedy, confront it.
Life is an adventure, dare it.
Life is luck, make it.
Life is too precious, do not destroy it.
Life is life, fight for it.”
~Mother Teresa

I love this quote from Mother Teresa and chose it this morning because I’m so grateful for my life and for the lives of my loved ones.  This journey that we’re on with my Dad is not the first one we’ve endured with him as he’s been hospitalized before this and he’s fought his way back to health.  For as much as he can be persnickety (just love that word!), the fight within him continues and enables him to elongate his life.

But it brings home that realization as well that “Life is Short” ~ a quote we’ve heard repeatedly from older generations ~ one that I know, I’ve brushed off myself when I was younger and before I knew I had breast cancer.  “Tomorrow, tomorrow…you’re only a day away” rang in my ears because when you’re young, there’s always tomorrow!  I’m not saying that we don’t have a tomorrow in our futures, but what about TODAY ~ NOW?  We have such power in the Present of Presence ~ of being here and now and enjoying this moment for what is it ~ good, bad, sad, but never indifferent…to live a life that is full of precious moments so that on our deathbeds, we are not regretting all of the woulda, coulda, shoulda’s that we may have missed.

Mother Teresa had it right ~ life is all of the above ~ so live it! 

Enjoy it!  Revel in it because it’s YOUR GIFT!

With a grateful, loving heart, flow along with your day and enjoy this gift of life.

You’ve earned it!

Happy Wednesday to You!

xo

Gratitude Day 14 ~ Times like these…

It’s times like these that you find out who your true friends are

and how lucky you are to have them in your life!

Wow…I am overwhelmed by all of the many people who have reached out to my family while my Dad continues to be in ICU at the hospital.  I sent a mass email (following Dad’s orders) to his contact list on email so that everyone knew what was going on with him.  I have received so many heartfelt messages back that I am simply speechless.  What’s brought me so much joy has been reading how everyone knows him and the many stories that they are telling me including how long they have known him and how long their families have known him.

My email went out blindly as the addresses weren’t named and many that were named, were not names that I was familiar with so it’s been an interesting 24 hours.   What amazes me is that he didn’t participate in a gratitude challenge (at least I’m not aware of it) but he has simply touched so many lives simply by being himself.  Now I am not putting him up for Sainthood as he is not perfect and is rather persnickety ~ truly an understatement ~ but he has given of himself to others which has helped them.  What a great legacy for his daughters and wife to experience while he is still here…and for him as well!

Which brings me to why it’s so important as I continue to stress, to live in the moment, to enjoy THE PRESENTS OF PRESENCE ~ the GIFT of NOW!  Tell those that you love that you love them, hug them close, tell them how grateful you are and take a moment to send a heartfelt card.

We only have today my friends ~ I don’t want to wait until it’s too late to hear that I mattered to you ~ and you don’t want to not hear it as well ~ make today count ~ take a moment to tell a friend, a stranger, a family member how you feel about them!  You’ll be glad you did!

Happy Tuesday!

Grateful Day 14 ~ my life is changing for the better ~ come join me and change your life!

xo

Gratitude Day 12 ~ Precious Time…

I found this quote this morning and had to make a card for it because it’s so pertinent to my life, especially at this moment in time.  As you may know, my Dad is very sick and in the ICU at the hospital.  Due to my recent surgery, I am not supposed to visit him due to his illness and I can’t even begin to explain how heartbreaking it is to know that I cannot be there to help him.  Not that I think I could really DO anything for him as his doctors and nurses are doing their best to heal him, but it’s quite hard to feel so helpless.

There are moments where we worry that we may lose him and in those moments, my heart breaks because I think that I may not see him again.  That is hard to bear.  But I am reminded of the few hours we recently spent just chatting the 3 of us (Mom, Dad and me) and my heart feels lighter as I know that I will always have that memory of him.

AAngel, my sister, has been so amazing for me with helping me to feel like I am a part of Dad’s journey and our family’s journey with him.  She has sent me videos of Dad telling me he loved me, she has put the phone up to him so that I could hear him speak to me and she has kept me in the loop at all times.  I am so blessed to have such a thoughtful, kind and generous sister.

My point today is TIME ~ please, use your time with others wisely ~ don’t lose a moment where you can make a difference by connecting with others in a special way ~ take the extra moments to do something good with your time, to help someone, to make a difference, be patient, be thoughtful, treat them as you’d want to be treated.

BE GRATEFUL that you have the time to share with those whom you love!

Hold close those whom you love, forgive, forget, make the time count with them, take pictures of the happy times, take videos of those special moments ~ even the mundane moments because when there is a threat of losing that person, you will hold close those moments in time, live on with those memories and you want them to be sweet and not sour.

My Dad can be persnickety (a nice word for him) and we’ve all had our moments with him.  It is hard to watch a strong-willed man struggle for breath as his body fights to heal itself.  Learn from my experience ~ you have been given THE PRESENTS OF PRESENCE (my FB page) ~ use them wisely, use them thoroughly and use them to enhance your life and the lives of the people who surround you!

We only have this moment in time…Enjoy it!

Remember to tell those whom you love, how GRATEFUL you are for them!

TODAY!

xoxo

Gratitude Day 10 ~ Daddy’s Rainbow

Yesterday was a very hard day for my family as my Dad’s situation worsened as the day went on which finally culminated in him being moved to ICU.  He wasn’t getting enough oxygen and his veins were unable to be accessed since he was so dehydrated even though he was being given an IV.  By 10:30pm at night, we were thinking the worst ~ my Mom, my sister AAngel and me.    In a panic, earlier in the day, I called my friend BAngel, sobbing uncontrollably as I told her what was going on.  It was so hard for me to stay away from his bedside but I had to for his health as well as my own.  I was unable to fathom that I might never see him again alive and was trying to comfort myself in the knowledge that the last time I had seen him, we had chatted amiably for over 2 hours which was so nice.  He had come over with my Mom to my house and it was just the 3 of us for awhile.  It hadn’t been just the 3 of us talking for a long time.

BAngel spoke to me in the most loving way possible.  As she gently explained what I needed to do and changed my way of thinking, I felt an increase in peaceful thoughts permeate my being, knowing that I had no control over the situation and that I just needed to be supportive to everyone involved ~ be the base camp for AAngel and my Mom ~ and send loving thoughts to my Dad.   When I allowed her sage wisdom to stay in my heart and mind, I was able to function, but when I allowed myself to succumb to fear and ego, I became a blubbering mess.

Last night when I laid my head upon the pillow, I spoke to God/Universe and to my Dad directly.  It was an amazing feeling as I felt as if I were speaking to him directly even though I knew he was so sedated that he wasn’t connecting with anyone at all.  But spirit to spirit, I believe we communicated.  Now you might think it strange for me to feel this way, but I know what I felt and the peace it gave me.  I went to sleep knowing that tomorrow would be a new day and hoped that I would not get a phone call during the night from the hospital nor from AAngel.

I happily report today how GRATEFUL I am that I awoke at 5am without having a sad phone call interrupting my sleep.  I’ve called the hospital already this morning to hear that he is alert, in grave condition, but there’s hope.

I took a drive yesterday afternoon to get out of the house ~ as I left the house, the skies opened up and we had thunder, lightning and a rainstorm.  Suddenly, the sun peaked out and although it was still raining, all of a sudden I saw this beautiful rainbow.  So I followed it until I could find a safe place to park and take a picture.  Growing up my Mom would call a sunny rainstorm ~ the Devil is beating his wife ~ I have no idea what that means…but we’ve always said it.

Scientifically, I know why we had the rainbow, but in my heart, I believe it was my Gift from God ~ a Gift of Faith, Love and Understanding.  So I’ve nicknamed that rainbow Daddy’s Rainbow today…and for Father’s Day it will be his card.  Prayers said, fingers crossed and giving the situation up to God/Universe.

Thanks for all of your prayers, comforting messages and thoughts.

I appreciate you all!

xo