Monday, May 22, 2017

Wake up. Get up. Show up.

It is Monday and the start of a new week.   I am waking up. Getting up. Showing up.  I am stepping into this week with a new determination of body, mind, and spirit to get going once again---No. Matter. What.   For this past month, I have felt beaten up, torn and tattered from my battle with chronic M. It has left me wounded as though "IT" has had the upper hand.  Ugh.  Many various triggers have been involved which have been completely out of my control.   Unfortunately, this is my reality with this illness. The message is loud and clear, thank you very much. 

 Many family and friends and well meaning folks ask me "why" all the latest trouble.  I am on a continuous roller coaster of highs and lows which leaves me drained to no end.   It is what it is.   I try and mange the illness the best way possible, but "IT" is always a moving target.  There is no simple answer to give.  Acceptance of my reality is the best gift I can give to myself.  This doesn't mean giving in or giving up trying to live the best life possible amidst the circumstances, it means having the faith to persevere along the rocky road.  I love my life and desire to live it to the fullest for which God has purposed me.  

Many lessons learned along the way as well as many gifts received are treasured indeed.  As I said before, I am humbled and grateful.  

I feel deep gratitude for another day to wake up, get up, and show up.  I don't how far I will travel or what I will get accomplished, but I do know with the Lord's constant help and mercy, I will walk in faith and seize every opportunity to reach out and encourage someone who needs a little help. 

I will close with a few insightful words of A.B. Simpson who wrote in my daily reflection book, Streams in the Desert.  

"The pressure of hard places makes us value life.  Every time our life is given back to us from such a trial, it is like a new beginning, and we learn better how much it is worth, and make more of it for God and man.  The pressure helps us to understand the trials of others and fits us to help and sympathize with them...  Trials and hard places are needed to press us forward, even as the furnace fires in the hold of that mighty ship give force that moves the piston, drives the engine, and propels that great vessel across the sea in the face of the winds and waves."  

It is my hope and prayer for you that in your trials, both great and small, you will be able to navigate the stormy seas and stay aboard the mighty ship until it reaches the calm shores of peace.  



Monday, May 8, 2017

Letting go

Lately I have been struggling with letting go.  This struggle is certainly not new to me, but sometimes I feel its tug-of-war more harshly.  Springtime seems to be the perfect season to declutter drawers and clean out closets and purge the unnecessary junk in my life.  This process of cleaning out and letting go is one which reaps freedom both physically and emotionally.   I get that.  I really do.  I have learned from my Buddhist sister that holding onto attachments is not healthy.  The older I become, the more I realize this to be quite true.  

For the past six months or so, I have had a front row seat to watching closely the way my Buddhist sister and neighbor has been quietly and calmly going about the business of cleaning out, giving away, and preparing to move states away from CT.  Her concentrated and focused effort in the tedious task has been inspiring to watch.   As her house contents became less and less chaotic, her soul grew more contented and peaceful.   It was obvious to many around her.  She actually shared in conversations details about the process and what it felt like as she was preparing her home and heart to move from her dwelling of twenty years to begin a new adventure.   

Sharing in her personal journey of departure has been a sacred time for me as well.  For months, I, too, have been practicing the discipline of detaching on several levels.  In reality, my friend has greatly motivated me to get to my own house and dig in and start really thinking about needs vs. wants.  What is necessary to keep vs. what can I part with so that others may live better?  Over the twenty some years of living in our current house, I think we have collected too much, and a lot of "stuff" just sits.  Ugh.  This doesn't feel like freedom to me.  Instead, it feels burdensome.  

On an emotional level, the process of letting go is more related to how can I simplify my daily living that better fits my daily-ness of chronic M?   This is a big task and not to be taken lightly.  It is a personal decision carefully tailored to fit my needs within the boundaries of my family and social life.  (Yes, I do still have somewhat of a social life!)  As I learn to continually let go of what no longer serves me in my current health status, boy, what a freedom I discover.  Big time.  To be honest, this is where I have my deepest struggle.  I "want" to have certain aspects of my "old life" back.  Some days I find myself totally sad and attached to my "easier" days of DOING. That being said, I am being refined in the fire day by day.  

The Good Shepherd continually calls me to Him so that He can can give me eyes of faith to discern His Wisdom and true Peace. Letting go from attachments of this world allows much more space for the Holy Spirit to guide me all the days of my life.  

With a bittersweet heart, I am letting go of my dear friend and neighbor who has lived across the street from me for twenty years.  We will communicate and share life across the miles as many friendships often do. We are spiritual sisters who share Christianity and Buddhism in our journey of life. I thank her for all she has taught to me over the years.  She is a very wise lady.  

We will luckily have the ability to walk and talk via FaceTime!  How wonderful is that?!  Encouragement and love are always meant to be shared no matter how close or how far away.   I cherish the blessings of my true friendships no matter where they may dwell or no matter how often I am in their physical presence.  Love you all, my special ladies! ❤️❤️❤️

I dedicate this post to sweet Nelum--- may God grant you His Peace and His Light on your paths yet untraveled.