Tag Archive | relationships

Sharing Experiences

sharingexperiences

Blogging is sharing experiences via writing as you well know if you’re a blogger.  We read blogs to share our experiences and to connect along the way.  Sometimes there’s a tidbit in someone’s blog which ignites a part of us in a good way.  I’ve learned so much from reading your blogs – new vocabulary, new books, and assimilated new ideas into my life.  I’ve connected through shared similar life experiences and found friendships, whether brief or long-term.  I’ve enjoyed expanding my thinking, my music repertoire and my enjoyment of reading with you as well.  I’ve felt when you’ve had challenges and grief in your lives and I have felt your support and caring when the same has happened in mine.

Writing with openness requires great vulnerability.  I don’t believe that when we open up to the world we are being weak.  I think it takes great strength to show ourselves in emotional truth for we never know how it will be perceived.  I feel grateful that I’ve found truth in the Universal code of kindness that if you don’t have something nice to say, you keep it to yourself because if it’s not helpful, then it’s hurtful and the majority doesn’t intend to hurt anyone else.

There may always be those who misunderstand me for which I’m sad, but I’ve accepted them.   Their fear-based beliefs keep them from opening up and experiencing life in different ways.  Fear can do strange things to people’s minds and being fear-based brings much anxiety to the most stable of individuals.  It is only when we release fear that we can embrace the plethora of goodness in life.  Sure, there are times when we are hurt, when misunderstandings occur and when people just don’t act with kindness.  That happens everywhere.  We must accept that we are all on our own journeys and that they intersect at different times.  We may walk on the path of life with someone for awhile and then part ways.  Or we may stay, sharing the path on and off for a lifetime.  What I know for sure is that each time our paths cross, whether it’s in a good situation or a teaching moment, we come away with a richer life experience for having crossed paths.

And isn’t that what life school is all about?  Learning, growing and experiencing all different types of situations and people?  Taking what comes to us a calm way and finding the good in the encounter – even when at the time it seems not so good?  When we are healed or when we can view it as an observer, we realize that the encounter has helped us to learn more about ourselves, to understand people in general and to enjoy the tapestry of experiences that is this life.  We are grateful for the peace and the  learning opportunity that we may have missed we if hadn’t crossed paths in this lifetime.

So I thank you for reading my blog and for opening up and letting us be with you through your blogs.  It is my honor to connect with you always.

Thanks for being you!

Shine On!

xo

By An Accidental Butt Dial, I Got An Important Message

byanaccidentalbuttdial

I heard my phone ringing, but I didn’t reach it before it went to voicemail.  When I listened to the message from the person, I realized that they had called me in error.  Normally, when I can tell that someone didn’t know they were leaving a message, I simply delete.  But something made me listen to the full message.   I overheard their full conversation clearly and it was eye-opening.

Because they remarked about me and not in a nice way.

So please be careful with your phones.  This is not the first time I’ve been butt dialed and overheard a conversation not meant for me and it may not be the last.

Has this ever happened to you?

There are gifts in the Universe that come through technology, like this one.  Surely we’ve all had times when our computer doesn’t let us do something only to find out that it was a gift that we didn’t send that email or buy that new dress.  Ha Ha!  There are times when we are delayed by stop lights, only to find that we have missed an accident up ahead.  Sometimes we are protected by technology and sometimes we learn from it.

The Universe delivers messages to us by all different channels when we are aware.  What we may deem coincidence or synchronicity is a clear message to help us along the way and to reveal the truth.

Knowledge is power, even when it hurts.

Shine On!

xo

 

 

 

 

Communication Troubles In Texting

shaw

The biggest problem in communication

is the illusion that it has taken place. 

~ Writer, George Bernard Shaw

Recently, I was having a conversation via text that went wrong.  It went straight down the wrong path into anger.  I knew it was because of miscommunication, but it escalated quickly.  Sure, it was a tricky subject we were texting about, but it was obvious we were coming from completely different viewpoints.

I admit, I was shaking because I was so upset.  I calmed down and regrouped.  I then reread the previous texts trying to pinpoint where it all went awry.  Then I found it!  The other person seemed to have completely missed a key message from a 3rd person in the group!  VOILA!

So I went back and texted – J, did you see M’s text?  Then I copied and pasted M’s blurb below it.  It was as if the heavens opened up and the sun came out along with rainbows.  The storm passed almost immediately and what J was so angry about had nothing to do with anything due to M’s text.  Crisis averted.

But miscommunication within texting comes often as we can’t hear the tone of the voice of the speaker.  We can’t tell if they are joking or serious and yes, that makes all the difference.  Sometimes a simple question can be interpreted as demanding instead of inquisitive.  A request can sound like a command instead.  Silence can be met by resentment in not answering when someone gets off task and doesn’t continue the conversation but leaves a read message that needed an answer, blank.

Don’t get me started on abbreviations because sometimes I can’t figure out what people are saying.  Or when Siri or autocorrect put their two cents in?  I’ve written some doozies that I didn’t notice autocorrect changed.  Lucky for me they were to friends who know I joke that I have fat fingers when I text quickly.  I seem to always hit the wrong buttons! LOL

Has this ever happened to you?

Shine On!

xo

 

 

Swinging With Mom

swingingwith mom

There are times in life when we question whether the truth should be revealed or if we should leave well enough alone.  Having a parent with Alzheimer’s, I hop on the porch swing with Mom daily.  Growing up in the South, her childhood home had a porch swing which we all remember fondly.  Due to her disease though, I never know where we are on the porch swing when we come together to enjoy an afternoon.  Sometimes we are in the past, sometimes we are in the present and sometimes reality gets muddied.  It changes sometimes very quickly so I am never sure where she is at any given moment.

Mom is a happy and healthy otherwise.  When she is in the moment, a great Present of Presence, we talk about the day and enjoy a chocolate milkshake because everything is happier with ice cream.  We laugh and joke and nothing makes me feel better than to hear her laugh.  I will say outrageous things to her just to see if she’s actually listening to me or if she is taking her cues from reading my expression.  I will ask her to recount  funny stories from her past, sometimes initializing stories I have heard hundreds of times before, just to hear her tell them to me again and to share a laugh.

Her sister passed away earlier this year and because they lived in the same home, it was hard on Mom.  With Alzheimer’s, they stay calm in the moment when something doesn’t trigger a memory and believe me, I try to stay in the moment with her often.  But when I went to visit the other day, chocolate milkshakes in hand as per our tradition, after a few moments, she told me how sad she was that her sister Mable had passed away.  I wrote about it here.  She told me how she missed her and how she was sad that she hadn’t attended her funeral.  I assured her that she had and that she had been with her whole family, seen her childhood home and reminisced over countless photos surrounded by her loving extended family.  She listened carefully and calmly told me she didn’t remember any of it, but that she was grateful that she had been there.

Then she began to talk about my Dad who passed away years ago.  She was angry that he hadn’t been talking with her and she didn’t know where he was.  She was embroiled in the hurt and anger that she felt because he wasn’t here with her.  I debated for quite awhile as she told her side of the story and how if he wasn’t talking with her, then she would not reach out to him (mind you, she didn’t know how to get in touch with him).  I took her hand in mine, looked into her eyes and spoke the words I dreaded saying again.

Mom, I am sorry to tell you this, but Daddy passed away.

What?  He’s dead?  Tears began to well up in her eyes and I immediately felt so badly.  We have had this conversation countless times since he passed away and it hurt me to tell her and have her hurt again.  But in my heart, I didn’t want her to feel that he had abandoned her by not being here.

Yes, Mommy.  He passed away a few years ago.

Oh, I didn’t know.  Oh my, where is he buried?  Did I go to the funeral?

As I began to answer her questions, it soothed her to know that she had indeed been there, that his funeral was greatly attended and then I threw in a few giggles that only our family could at a time like this – because I couldn’t stand seeing her so upset.  I soothed her sadness with love and light and hugged her, trying to heal her hurting heart.

I guess I”m losing my mind here.  I just don’t remember anymore.

It’s ok.  It happens to the best of us Mom.

It’s better sometimes to allow the grief to fade and to concentrate on today, on our milk shakes and our happy times.

So, I snuggled up to her, like only a daughter can, on her bed, by her side, holding her as if she were my daughter and reversed the roles.  She held on tightly in my embrace and my heart overflowed with sadness and yet, with gratitude for this one precious moment.

Moms comfort their children throughout their lives.  That’s what we do.  But sometimes, there comes a time when the roles reverse and we are our Mother’s Mother.  We comfort and soothe in the maternal way we learned through our Moms.

I wish she didn’t have this disease for it has robbed her of her memory.  But I am also truly grateful that she remains in there, loving us with all her might and knowing who we are.  Sometimes we just know that these moments are precious and are to be treasured.  Isn’t that what life’s about?  Stringing together those precious pearls of connection?  And swinging on a porch swing, sipping a chocolate milkshake and enjoying the calm in a Southern hospitality way?

Shine On!

xo

 

The Benefits In Troubles and Challenges

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If you read the title of my post today and scoffed, I don’t blame you.  When I wrote it, I scoffed a bit too because frankly, who wants to be grateful for troubles and challenges?  Heck, those are things we shy away from, even run from as fast as possible!

Who is their right mind would say there are benefits in troubles and challenges?

Me!  And maybe even you?!

Because I’ve endured quite a few, (cancer, divorce, family with Alzheimer’s and Dementia, death of family, just to name a few), I can attest to their benefits (of course, this is AFTER they happened).  After the fact, we can see how individual challenges make us grow and strengthen us.  The challenges force us, sometimes unwillingly, to look at our lives with a different perspective.  They inspire us to deep deeper into ourselves to find the strength, the courage, and the inspiration to get through the difficult times.  We find out what we are really made of when we have challenges in life.  We are offered choices on life’s path and the beauty that we can choose again at any time makes life interesting.  Challenges and growth opportunities allow us to see how far we’ve come in our lives.

We can see troubles and challenges as building blocks on the road to life.  Our ability to endure them and to triumph over them (or to not) shapes us in different ways.  We enable our innate personality traits to be tweaked.  We learn new ways of coping.  We tune our minds into new avenues of solutions.  We can make new friends who open our eyes to finding peace in stressful situations.

The potential for growth, mentally, emotionally and psychologically during troubles and challenges can be exponential.  True, it can be maddening and frustrating as heck to have to deal with difficulties, but the benefits in the end, can outweigh the discomforts.

I know, you are probably thinking that I just don’t understand your troubles and challenges and you are right.  We all have our own path, but as I have found, they sometimes intersect and we can walk a path together with a friend (or a stranger who becomes a friend) and we can help each other, and support each other as we move through the tough times.

At least that’s been my experience throughout this lifetime.  I find that the higher power in my life, call it what you may, God, Universe, Infinite Spirit, your own higher power – helps me along the way through the hard times by planting strangers disguised as angels, friends, synchronizations, coincidences, etc. in order to help me overcome whatever is holding me back.  These in turn encourage me to grow, to learn and to accept what previously I may have deemed unacceptable.  But in the long run, I know that they were necessary growth spurts to get to me to where I am now.

It’s hard to believe for some of us that there’s a light at the end of a dark tunnel and that in the end, all the hard times were worth the changes that were hard won.  It’s mind-blowing at times that we can see in hindsight the benefits that come after enduring these life lessons.

But they are there.  Truly, they are there.

So please, if you are wondering if it’s karma or back luck or whatever you are thinking in order to blame the bad that’s going on in your life right now, just stop.  Accept it.  Keep going through it and move on.

That light at the end of the tunnel is beckoning you with sunshine!  Come on, hold my hand.  I’ll walk the path with you!

Shine On!

xo

 

 

Cancer Changed Me

cancerchangedme

Hope ~ Strength ~ Power ~ Belief ~ Courage ~ Honor ~ Determination

I have been told that cancer changed me.  Indeed, it wasn’t said it in the nicest of ways.  In fact, it was taken as a disparaging comment and I was appalled by the off-hand comment.  My first reaction was to defend myself at the time, to show how cancer didn’t change me.  But I left well-enough alone and decided to say nothing.  However, I was hurt by the retort.

Had cancer really changed me?

The question mulled in my head for days and many sleepless nights, more than I’d like to admit, but it’s true.  I’ve written how cancer changes you enough times in this blog to know that the reality is – YES, cancer changes most of us.  It has to, or we wouldn’t still be here.  For we have seen into the yawning mouth of our own demise, endured the most feared emotions and have come out of it alive, so far.  Looking at your own potential death does change you.

It makes you more aware for the most part.  Some of us now see with finite definition that life is short and there are no guarantees how much time we have on this earth.  We become grateful for the beauty in nature, for the simple pleasures that kindness brings and for a real, loving hug which can cure many ills.  We look to connect with others more because we know what it’s like to feel alone.  We share our stories, encourage each other and find the courage to be who we authentically are!  We smile when we are tired.  We work hard to overcome obstacles and to be there for others, even when we feel depleted.  We take that extra moment to smile and to enjoy goodness when it comes into our lives.  We are grateful for the support that we have been given and we look to support others to continue the flow of goodness.  We share tips to help others and happily receive tips to make our lives easier.

We know that all the money in the world, with all the frivolities are fleeting and really don’t mean a damn when death comes knocking at our door.  It’s that silence between ourselves and our maker (or our beliefs) in the quiet of the night that counts.  It’s regarding peace within as a precious gift, time spent with loved ones and a centered calm in which to retreat when life becomes hard.  It’s the voice within the stillness which speaks of love, gratitude, peace with ourselves and others and God.

Yes, cancer changed me.  That’s for sure.  Perhaps it was the misunderstanding of me that caused this person to spout the ‘dig’ as I took it.  Sometimes it takes a loss for us to be humble and perhaps there will be people who simply never understand.  And that’s ok with me.

I am me, authentically me.  I make mistakes, I ask for forgiveness and I forgive.  I choose to live in a state of peace within when I can, but I am always evolving, ever growing and yet, trying to do all things with love.  I intend to do my best, at any given moment, but I’m human.  I’m a work in progress.  Aren’t we all?

What’s precious to me in my life is love, kindness and connections and I strive every day to live with those three precious gems in my life.  Cancer made me a better person by giving me so many lessons in my life.  I’ve learned so much from cancer, even though I never wanted to endure that disease.  Looking back on my life, I realize that I am who I am today because of cancer.  Even if others don’t understand me, it’s ok now.  I’m at peace and I’m ever grateful for the peace within me.

Shine On!

xo

Smooth Seas

smoothsea

A smooth sea never made a skilled sailor.

~ Franklin D. Roosevelt

Sometimes we wonder why hard times fall on us.  We blame karma, bad luck, ourselves or others for the sad times.  We can’t understand why or how bad things happen to good people.  Have you ever felt this way?

I love the quote above as it makes sense to me.  Sadly I agree that in good seas, we don’t have to practice what we preach.  It is only when the storms arise that we must walk our talk and talk our walk or however that quote goes.  You know what I mean, don’t you?

During stormy seas, we realize who our true friends are and who we can count on.  Unexpected friendships can arise and we may even be surprised by who reaches out in kindness…and who doesn’t.   We may even finally realize who supports us and who doesn’t, as words without actions are simply words.

Kindness goes a long way, especially when you are hurting.  Being a warm, safe haven for someone is a precious gift, especially during stormy seas.  I want to thank those who have helped me over the years, the ones whose kindness never waned and whose support I felt even in my darkest hours.

Shine On!

xo