When my 92 year old mother passed in 2009, I expected to have instant healing from a lifetime of a dysfunctional relationship with her. That’s not the way in works.
Christmas Season was the good month in my growing up years….it’s what my mother did well. I am an only child and Christmas was magical as my mother showered me with many things from my wish list. I did not realize it at the time but this was the way she showed me that I was loved. This recognition and realization was a huge beginning for my healing…..I WAS loved…because her love did not resemble what I expected in our daily experiences together, I totally missed it.
Every Christmas since 2009, I have been on an emotion roller coaster, of unmet expectations…until I worked through the details of those emotional expectations …. until I figured out that The Christmas season does not mean the same thing …. Love….to everyone around me….until I have my Annual Christmas cry because I miss my mom and dad and Aunt Frances….until I make Scalloped oyster with my mom …. Her recipe anyway….
Making scalloped oysters today, with my mom in my heart and a good ole Christmas cry!
Although I told Him when I got home from my Dermatology appointment that had I known that 50 plus years in the future I would have to have skin cancer and precancerous lesions removed, I would have still “layed out” in the sun….because quite frankly few things were more relaxing…..and I always felt beautiful and invulnerable with a great tan!
Back in April, I had a squamous cell lesion removed from my left cheek. I was told that they are quite common because the left cheek is naked to the car window when driving. So now I have a scar which doesn’t look beautiful. A couple months ago, I became “more” aware of a bump on my jaw line and decided to make an appointment to have it checked out along with a full body check as long as I was there. It really looked nothing like the first one…but, another fun medical treatment…. Cryosurgery to remove 5 precancerous lesions….yes…there were 5…the freezing burns like hell…it was like that point you get to when you think I can’t stand one more second and then it stops…apparently they will scab over, heal and go away….thankfully!
“Nothing else to be concerned about”…as she was telling me that everything else looked great, I was Observing my obvious sun damaged arms and legs…WOW. Please do what I’m going to do…..wear sunscreen especially on your face and have a dermatologist look at your bumps and age spots!
Sitting on the couch this morning, I “felt” a small tremor….like when several cats on a mission jumps off the back of the couch or someone drops a heavy object in another part of the house or like when dynamite detonates at one of the two nearby quarries…..I sat for a moment waiting for the proverbial other shoe to drop…and it didn’t…no truck running into the house, no apparent earthquake …all seemed to be well in the moment.
Which lead me to >>>>just another lesson in fear….as I waited for the thinking and worry to start “omg what was that” to mess up my Friday morning, …my thoughts were on high alert….what might happen, what might that have been, should I check Facebook to see if anyone is talking about it. I could have lost a whole second, minute, hour or day by allowing my mind to go totally unsupervised with all the possibilities that are “possible”……you know….with some imaginary event that has just not happened yet! This minor or probable catastrophic event that will change my life, make me sad, irritate me, scare me to death or cause me great hardship.
I am becoming aware that all the things I plan for or try to get in front of never happen…every day I go through life stepping over mole hills that never turn into mountains. Putting my nervous systems….all body systems…..on high alert….ready for the saber tooth tiger.
How many times do I have to jolt myself back to reality…back to JUST STOP! Just breath! Just change your thoughts with a hard stop and recalculate like the GPS on your phone. Logic tells me that by practicing this new way of just accepting what is actually happening without drama or color, it will become easier to navigate daily experiences with my body relaxed and my mind at peace!
It seems I may have dumped a lot of something in my dream state last night…I woke up recognizing a clarity I have not had for the last few weeks…it’s not like I haven’t realized where my irritation, anger, judgement, hopelessness, and fear were percolating from…but, quite frankly, the more I rationalized and gave my thoughts a safe place to “think” the more miserable I was….and I knew it…I knew what was going on.
I don’t know if Albert Einstein actually said this but this life changing phrase was shared from someone’s consciousness and I am grateful!
A few years ago, I took a wild kinda route to changing my experience. I packed up and moved from everything I had ever known. I recognized I was circling the drain physically, mentally and spiritually a few years ago….and I also knew that if I continued struggling my way to air every single day…trying to make the same thinking work in a different way, I would succumb to becoming a lonely bitter old woman with negative, joyless and angry thought patterns just like my mother taught me. My breaking the glass to escape moment was not easy but I believe it was much easier than daily doing and thinking the same hateful, destructive thoughts. Fear of doing nothing finally became the worst possible life scenario.
If we are strong enough to get outside our head and breathe where we are planted….that does seem like the most comfortable route…but often that is not possible. The knowing is within…the solution is there and We know what the solution is….but the remedy of kicking away the blocks, of changing from the inside out can be daunting….until you know in that second that there really are no rules except of our own making and those rules manifest from fear that keeps us locked in and locked down.
What are they thinking
What has their journey been
What scares them
What makes them feel happy
What makes them angry
Do they have family
Would they label their childhood happy or sad
Were they fulfilled or lacking as children
Who do they worry about
Who makes them throw their head back and laugh
Are they aware of emotional triggers
Do they want to be my friend
Do I want to be their friend
What about them has drawn my attention
Where do they work
Where did they work
Do they turn away from grief or work through it
What cuisine do they like
Do they cook or eat out
What is their favorite restaurant
Are they married
Do they have children
How many times have they moved
How far do they live from their childhood home
What would they list as sadness, anger, happiness, contentment
Do they like who they are, where they are
Are they satisfied
Are they introvert, extrovert, omnivert
Should I say HI
What causes me to hesitate?
A girlfriend from my early 20’s posted this on Facebook this morning.
As I was responding to her, I was thinking about friendships. Today is the birthday of a friend who no longer circulates with me in the physical world because he passed on 11 years ago. He’s the kind of friend that still visits with me often in my thoughts. I often wish I could “gossip” about something with him or hear his “oh gurl” one more time but I understand how lucky I am that so many things in my present life call him forward in my mind and I know he will always be with me .
I used to have a poster in my “teenage Nina” room that had a picture of a butterfly on it and the words were “if you love something set it free, if it was yours it will return and gently land on your shoulder”. That was my anthem for teenage boyfriends and crushes. It may have been a quasi spiritual knowing even back then….
I dreamed last night about a good friend who moved away. I woke up recognizing that this is what life is about. All of the important personalities moving in and out of my life when my soul needs a charge. I have a tendency to hold onto people. If you’ve been my friend, chances are You will never be free of me…I very seldom burn bridges. But life happens and we move around just as we are supposed to….and then there is that blessed, surprise contact you receive. It feels so good…often I long for everything to go back to the way it was…but the relationship of the souls has changed…we are still grounded in a history of love and trust but it is just different. I’m learning to accept the difference and embrace these dear souls in my life without expectations. The connection is strong, it’s how we choose to engage right here and right now that makes the difference.
Responding to my comment “after 42 years of marriage, maybe he was trying to kill me”, the doctor shuddered with that little nervous giggle and said..ya, that’s the way I would do it…through the ear. hahahah
He was hanging pictures on the wall yesterday afternoon and was using a razor blade knife with a brand new blade to cut marking tape. He laid the knife on the back of the couch for a second. The next second, I bounced down on the couch, the knife tipped off the couch and into my ear. As I reached up to remove it, I realized it wasn’t laying against my ear…the point was IN MY EAR! I swear if I had thought about it at my moment of panic, I would have taken a Stephen King scenario type picture sans the blood. The blood had chosen a different route as it meandered a path through the bony structure of the inside of my ear. I think the tickle brought me back to reality realizing that what I imagined as the most important aspect being a knife sticking vertically in my ear….was now actually something that happened in the past as I realized I was bleeding somewhere “in there”. At his suggestion I stuffed a paper towel in the little hole to stop the blood which worked well..applied some frankincense (my go to healing essential oil) with a Q tip, made an appointment for this morning with the doctor and basically forgot about it because there was really no pain.
Dr appointment: nurse who took me into the room using her calm voice. OMG HOW DID THIS HAPPEN. Doctor enters the room…”shook her hands in front of her in a professional shudder” and said…HOW DID THIS HAPPEN? After the exam, I asked her if she could see it and she said…Oh YA..I can see it. Prognosis…its fine if it gets infected and begins to hurt or seep fluid, call me!
I woke up this morning thinking…okay…it’s Friday whew. With my first cup of coffee I contemplated why the Friday relief seemed to mean something to me…I am a retired woman with virtually stress free days. By the second cup of coffee, my subconscious apparently had the time to answer the question…I’m still running on rules and schedules that I either adopted, inherited or expected of myself for 65 years prior to today….and
The big and….if I don’t make the choice to change that thinking, I will live out my life thinking…ahhh Monday a new start (what can go wrong) until Friday (whew glad that nightmare is over).
From the inner work I’ve been doing, I know that just realizing the error of my ways and deciding it’s time for change does not mean that Monday I will wake up “healed”not even realizing it is Monday while experiencing the day only each moment in its moment. Chances are without practicing this “in the moment consciousness”, I’m likely to be controlled by the future… in an hour, tonight, next Tuesday…and the past…can’t do that remember what happened last time! It takes practice to bring myself back to the present each time I recognize I’ve stepped back on the craziness treadmill!
Then I read the daily word. Dailyword.com
The second paragraph got me!
Divine order holds everything together, even that which appears chaotic or without reason. I may not be able to see the entire picture, but I TRUST THE STRUCTURE THAT UNDERGIRDS ALL LIFE. When I behold this symmetry in my life and in the world, I feel the comfort and security in divine order.
The whole “chore” of washing sheets (it’s not like I had to use a washboard in the stream) and remaking the bed became a mindful experience for me. Instead of focusing on the facts associated with this chore, I was shockingly finished and walking out of the room without thinking “why am I the only one who knows how to wash sheets in this house”. This takes nothing away from all of the things He does on a daily basis…it’s merely an historical triggered reaction.
Right after I rejected the common habit of yelling down and asking him to help me so I don’t have to walk around the bed myself 4 times, I recognized that this was another facet of the poor-me trigger I had learned so well. The good news is while putting the pillow cases on, I realized that I really did have a valid reason for not making my bed everyday because seriously, how does the bed go about breathing and airing out when covered with sheets, blankets and comforter all day. You are welcome…you may use it!
As I was walking around the bed on an unexpected trip (making it 6 times) to measure the distance of the top sheet to the bottom of the mattress on each side, I realized that every time we make the bed together, he gives me a reading of the sheet level to the mattress on his side…and, of course, this irritates me. Because it is an historical triggered reaction to those times when we slept in a small bed with smaller sheets and every time someone turned over, it could mean one person lost the sheet. As the victim in my own story, it was always me!
So, I share this insight as encouragement for bed makers out there to use the experience as a calming, counseling session with yourself. Finding gratitude in the mundane daily activities….even making the bed…..CAN be a spiritually enlightening experience……
I had a blessed visit this morning with my dad…..it manifested with steepled fingers. Elbows on the arms of the chair with all 5 hand digits touching each other only connecting at the finger pads. It’s one of those memories of seeing my dad sitting in his recliner with his head back with his hands touching in the steepled finger position. The very last time I saw my dad was from the door of his hospital room shortly before his transition, laying in bed with fingers in the steepled position occasionally moving his hands as if having a conversation with someone I could not see.
This morning during the Daily Word and meditation portion of our Unity Service with my eyes closed I felt tears beginning to trickle from the outer corners of my closed eyes and my attention was drawn to the fact that my elbows were resting on the arms of the chair and my 5 finger pads on each hand were touching in a steeple position and I knew that my dad was close by. I wondered why the visit!
The energy of my dad visits often when I am open to his guidance or I am in a moment when I recognize I’m feeling lost or lonely and need some love. It’s not that I actually reach out or seek his connection, it’s that he just appears in my vulnerable heart. I am learning to allow the embrace, allow the connection, recognizing that his presence is here with me always and most importantly understanding that his presence is as real as if he were looking at me across the room from his recliner in his physical form.