In honor of John

don  1

Two years ago I walked in to a physical therapist’s office not knowing at all what I was facing. I think back to that time in my life and it is hard to remember the fear and pain I was in all the time. It was so pervasive that I was unable to even sense how deep it was. I just lived with it. I did not know what flight, fight or freeze was and how the limbic system worked. I did not understand much of anything that was going to be presented to me in the following years. I had expectations of walking into his office and he would look at me, give me ten exercises and tell me to be on my way. “See ya next week.” I was so wrong.

Every week I would show up and like a terrified animal, I would wrap myself up as tight as I could get and almost cringe as I walked into the office or into his treatment room. I hated that yellow room. It scared me. But the daemons were all of my own making. It took months before he could even touch me to help me. Looking back it is hard to remember what it felt to be that scared all the time. It is hard to remember how hypervigilant I was all the time. I was a terrified human being whose bruises were apparent to everyone. I felt disconnected to everyone and everything. No one knows how really bad it was except John, who stood at the edge of the rabbit hole and extended his hand. It was his pulling me up to the next level that allowed me to fight for myself and ask for more help. His investment in me gave me strength and hope, something no one else had ever done for me.

Something amazing happened. I began to trust him. It was his faith in me and the courage he gave me that allowed this healing to occur. I asked to heal and I made a commitment to work on healing. My wounds were very big, some so deep that I did not even know all the pieces. Together we would eradicate the fear as they surfaced and together we would face them. I spent hours writing and sending him my thoughts; pages and pages of it. He patiently would respond with encouragement and hope. It was his hope, his light that gave me the strength to continue.

And I did continue. I found other guides who joined my crusade to aide me. I would crash and burn continually. I literally fell on my face once, but I spent hours doing face plants in a metaphorical sense. I think back and I wonder why would anyone go through something like this? Well, like the chicken, I wanted to get to the other side. We even would fight as I thought I wanted something I felt he was not providing. He was wise and knew in time I would get what I needed. Like a young child, he nurtured me and showed me that my impatience was not a bad thing but I needed to learn to trust. I still struggle with this but I am so much better.

My wheel has turned and I continue to grow. I have been blessed with a new teacher who I connected with a year ago. She has taken me places I never would have dreamed of before I walked into that small office two years ago. I write this in an effort to encourage others who are as afraid as I was to seek help and support. I am hoping someday I will pay back all that I have received by helping others find the strength to heal. I will never have the words to express the extent of my gratitude for all those who have helped me.

Tomorrow is my last scheduled visit with John. It is bittersweet because he has been such a huge part of my life. But because of his work with me, I know it is time to move on. I am hoping he will let me see him periodically.

Mr. Borden, know this: I will love you eternally. My gratitude will be demonstrated by continuing to work and grow and not falter on this quest. I know I was a challenging windmill, sir. Never doubt your power and magic as you do possess these things. My light burns bright because of your light. It will be with me always. Thank you.

 

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Thanking Raphael

raphael

I was newly divorce living on my own for the first time in my life, ever. I had noticed that my middle finger on my left hand would get very cold and numb. I smoked. I figured it was Raynaud’s or poor circulation. Sometimes it was fine. I also drank a lot and I mean a lot. One night during a pretty heavy binge, I fell on the stairs. I remember thinking I had not spilled my drink that I was carrying and was actually proud of it. The next morning, I had a very funny feeling. I was off to pick up some kitties to come live with me. I got to the destination, and felt completely awful. I was dizzy, sweating and I could not feel much. There was a loud buzzing and when I walked, I walked with a lean to the left like I was walking in a circle. Someone took my pulse and said they could not find it. I feigned I was fine and actually drove home. I remember literally crawling up the stairs and passing out in bed. I woke sometime much later and my side of my face was numb and buzzy. I tried to eat, was not too successful and went back to bed. The next day, I was better but I was scared. I called my doctor and she said go to the hospital immediately. I have never shared this with anyone except the doctor.

My friend drove me. I told her there was something wrong with my finger. The put oximeter on my finger and I remember they said they thought the meter was broken. They put it on another finger, and it was a strong reading. Back on the bad finger, and it was ridiculously low. They told my friend to go home and pack me a bag. Little did I know it was going to be 11 days later before I just left.

They put me in an observation room and I was left there over night. I do not remember anyone coming in to check on me. I thought one thought; I was as alone as anyone could possibly be. I was not scared, I was alone. I remember thinking in the dark, as the room had no light, which on reflection was very strange, that I could just let go. No one would care and so I did. The next day is a blur, but I ended up having my left arm sliced open and they pulled an inch long clot out of my left wrist. Somewhere in the next day, they scoped me and found five more clots. One was in the subclavian artery close to the heart and was the size of a jelly bean.

This is not about the surgery. This is about what happened the night before the surgery. The doctor had told me to get “my affairs in order.” My dear friend came and signed the health proxy and all the other crap that makes the doctor feel better if he messes up. The prognosis was grim, but they were going to perform open heart surgery and hoped they would not move the clot the wrong way or any other ones.

That night, I had the room to myself. The patient who was in there with me had crossed over. Not a good sign. But I was totally numb to the whole thing. I was not panicking which would be my normal reaction. Around midnight, a thunder storm blew in. There was a huge window and it faced Lake Ontario which was off in the distance. I had a beautiful view. I heard someone approach and sit next to me on the arm of the huge chair I was in. Now I think of it, he perched as there really was no place for him to sit. He was a young male nurse. I was instantly struck by his presence and we did not say much. He just asked if he could sit with me. As I am writing this, eleven years almost to the day, he said hardly anything. But he stayed with me. I was in awe of the lightening which was fierce and fabulous. We did not talk about the surgery or anything. But I felt comforted and calm with him there. I can barely describe him visually: young, male, dark short hair and a square but very pleasant face. He wore blue scrubs. But I can remember distinctly the calm and assurance he provided me. I think I asked him if he had other patients to see and he said he was assigned to me or something similar. I was fine with that. He stayed the whole storm. When he went to leave, he leaned over and kissed me on the forehead. I thought absolutely nothing about it until years later. Nurses do not kiss people.

I just spent the past weekend in a spiritual retreat to continue my lessons on Spiritual Healing Touch. I never got the whole angel thing and struggled mightily with the concept of spirit guides and guardian angels. I had connected with one guide this past year and I have learned to rely on her subtle messages when I quiet my mind. The past month, I have also felt the presence of others who I joking refer to as my posse. They are still nebulous but I am often aware of the sense of support of others coming from behind me. Believe what you will, as I had a lot of doubts about this myself. This weekend, a couple of the techniques required calling on angels to support the healing. At one point, before we started a treatment, you call a specific angel to help. I called on Raphael, who is an Archangel of Healing. (I did not know that when I called him. That was just the name I used. I just google it) I felt someone behind me and then become part of me. It was so overwhelmed I was crying during the whole treatment. My partner thought there was something wrong but they were tears of joy. I actually felt the same thing a couple of more times last weekend. It was amazing, but I would not have believed it two years ago or even six months ago.

So back to the night of April of 2003. I now know this nurse was not a nurse. He never came back. No one had a clue who he was at the hospital. I just let it go and did not think about it much until the other night during a guided meditation. I am not going to go into that. What I will share is what happened the next morning after his visit. I was prepped for surgery, and there is a funny story about the walk to the OR, but I wrote about it once before. The short end of the story is I woke up in the ICU. I patted my chest and realized they did not cut me open at all. They had knocked me very deeply out and re-scoped me. They found nothing. There was not a clot to be found. I stayed in ICU until I was thrown out for being such a wise ass with my friends. I stayed in the hospital for nine more days because they were sure I was going to pop a clot somewhere. I made friends everywhere and I actually was allowed to walk around the hospital as there was nothing wrong with me. I never found that nurse from that night  and I was on the same floor.

I had no one to take care of me and my dogs and if I had had the surgery, the chances were not good that I would have been ok afterwards. They diagnosed is a hereditary disease called Factor 5 Leiden. Since then, I have been able to help my family become aware as my brother has it and one nephew. My father died from it and his mother had it.

To my midnight visitor: I just want you to know how grateful I am for your love for me and your miracle healing. I never said thank you. I was blessed as anyone could be. Thank you.

(I went looking for an image to use for this blog and found the one I posted…. It took my breath away when I found it in a Google search for Raphael which I did after I wrote this blog….wow)

Giving to yourself

Take off

I just spent three days in a wonderful spiritual workshop with ten other lovely ladies. It is in a series of classes I am taking on Spiritual Healing Touch. When I took the first class over almost a year ago, I was filled with doubt and fear so much that I almost did not go. But on the recommendation of a long time mentor, Dr. Kates, I went. This started quite a significant part of my journey. I look back and think how I was then and what I thought I was supposed to do. I was stilled trapped in figuring out what people wanted from me and what the expectation was in everything I did. It always filled me with trepidation.
This is the third class and in between we have had Circle nights where we get together and either just talk or learn new techniques. I had in my head that this was about becoming something and now I know I was placed here for something I would not have understood a year ago. This was for me; a gift to learn more than how to lay hands. The healing was from within for me. This was the true gift. I would not have been able to accept that in the past because I would think “I am not worthy.” But I know better now and the only way to move forward is to “heal thy self first”. And it is not selfish; it is our right to be healthy and whole. It is our destiny. And if you are willing to do the work, and there is a lot of never ending work to do on yourself, it is the best gift you can give or get. No one else can do this for you. No one can truly heal another. We can guide, we can support each other and we can help the energy to find healing but unless the receiver is willing and able and most important: engaged, it is all for not.
I came away from the workshop with so much more than one step closer to my achieving a goal, which was the original intent. I find the completion of the class less significant now, although I will finish the series. I did come away with some powerful tools to help others. But I came away with a ton of things to help myself. Every morning we had to pick a word from a deck of little angel cards and share it. Or add our own word to demonstrate how we were feeling. I used my own words that came to me in the morning before class. They were acceptance and courage. One of the last cards I selected was Love. Those were the gifts.

Lost hours

Goddess of the garden   Goddess of the Garden

Today we all lost an hour. Would not matter but I am sensitive to the switch to daylight savings time. I notice the subtle shifts in the light. It is good because it means spring. But it tweaks with my internal clock.  I think it is a stupid practice we need to stop participating in. No one needs DST any more. I realize that the benefit was to lessen the consumption of energy by being up at the optimum amount of sunlight. But my work day does not shift so I will be back to driving to work in the dark. I do not like that. I will enjoy coming home in day light and I will be able to spend some time outside with my doggies. But sitting outside in subzero temperatures does not facilitate that lately. It has been ridiculously cold and it seems spring will never come. But losing that hour made me think this morning. It struck me how many hours I have lost.

This year is a tough one for me. I am facing turning 60 in June. I am acutely aware how lucky I am to be able to say that. My mother could not. She did not live long enough. I have friends who did not make 60 either, so I am blessed. I remember my grandmother’s 65th birthday and how she looked and acted. I thought she was so old. I do not feel old most days. The truth is that the number frightens me more than the physical reality. Life is such a game and how you play it makes all the difference.

It is hard to express the need I feel to accelerate my learning and participation in activities that help me grow.  “Just be” has never sat well with me. I have too many lost hours. I won’t get them back but I can do something different moving forward. I need to cherish every hour. If I spend an hour in quiet reflection or meditation, that is not wasted time. And to sit in the garden is time spent connecting with the Source. Time wasters are arguments and discord and working hard at useless endeavors. I want my remaining time to be resourceful and productive. I want my footprint to leave a lasting impression in some manner, hopefully a good one. I cannot stop the cellular progression of my body and I accept that. But I do have control of wasted and lost hours.

What is cycling

spinning top

I want to share part of the experience that I go through and have for the last two years. I refer to it as cycling. I did not know what it was even when I was doing it. But others did and they would wait patiently for me to return, as I always did . I think this effect is very common but I did not know that. But I will tell you I hated it. I still do, but I aware of it and more comfortable when I am in a spin.

So what is cycling? It is the pattern of experiencing jubilant happiness, almost to being high to the slamming down to extreme depression and then eventually even out. When I would go through one of these episodes, the high was very, very short lived but not so the depression. That would last and it would seem forever before I would find even footing.

I share this because I want anyone who is going through something similar to know it is ok. It is all part of the healing process. I did not know that. I would be over zealous in my short lived high. I would express love and joy and thought I had found nirvana only to cascade down and do what I called a face plant. It was a regular event. These episodes were brought on by therapy sessions of certain kinds that would induce extreme sensations and feelings. It was necessary to knock down the walls that I had created. I had to release so much and it was the manner that allowed that to happen. Fortunately for me, I have caring and loving people who support me.

I still cycle. Recently I experienced the sensation of feeling like I was a bit invincible. I was celebrating a new found space of comfort and growth. At first I was satiated and feeling Devine and then the downward thrust. It does not matter what caused it or what this particular episode was about because it is always the same. The good news is the time from high to low to even is much, much shorter and neither is as extreme. I can embrace the “even” sooner.

I share this now because part of what I am really “getting into” is the physiology of what happens in the brain and the body along with the spiritual components. Mind, body and spirit are totally intertwined. I find this all fascinating.

Pharmacy nightmare

pharmacy       “And how can I screw up your order today?”

This is a tale of debauchery and exploitation of the highest kind. I put this out there for my fellow bloggers so that the word can spread. The crime is health care and in this case, the pharmaceutical branch. Here is the plot. They make it impossible for humans to get the medicine they manufacture to the point of desperation. That way the suffering idiots will pay anything for it.

I am on a specialty drug called Enbrel. Enbrel runs about $1760.00 a shot. It may be more now. I would do just about anything I could to get off this. My reasons have only been amplified after this week. Enbrel suppresses the over active immune system I have which causes the inflammation every time I move. It also slows down the production of extra cells that create the psoriasis on my skin and in my organs.  I am lucky because it works. I was on originally taking it every week and I have reduced the dosage significantly. It also has some nasty side effects like making me incredibly susceptible to infections that could kill me because I would not be able to fight them off and can produce cancer cells.  No problem.

I called in my prescription into Accredo last November when I had to switch insurances. It took two months to get the first order. I had to go through so many hoops but I did get it. Then for my next shipment, they decided not to send it because the weather was bad. Really? It is not like they hand carry it. Well, that was just the beginning of a long process of lies. Every time I called them, I had to start with a new person and they had to hear the story and then read the notes. The outcome in the last six calls was they had it figured out. Every time, it was something else wrong. But it was also an hour every night on the phone. The last time I called, the woman was so pleasant and assured me she had it figured out. This call was an hour and half. She wanted me to call the next day to her supervisor who she sat near and she would then get on the phone. She did not have a direct number. The next day I called at the specific time and the number went right to voice mail. I did it five times…which give me some satisfaction because she has five annoying voice mails that say nothing. Then I called the main number and supposedly got someone else who said it was her supervisor too and she was at her desk and that she would go get tell her to take this call. And the other lady who was supposed to be at her desk was at lunch. Who would imagine that? So I waited as she transferred me and she said she would stay on the line until the supervisor picked up. I was so excited….and then, click….. nothing.

That did it. I had our benefit person call the insurance company directly and they called through and supposedly they are getting it fixed. Then I called the rheumatology office and they are on it and supposedly it is being shipped out on Monday. We will see. I hope I get a ton of it as it lasts for two years. Do not use Accredo if you can or Express Scripts which is the same.

On top of this, I get a B12 shot monthly. I went to the doctor on Thursday to get it and they are out. They do not have any and they cannot get it. I was absolutely disgusted with all this. This is like being held hostage.

The good news is I did some research and found something better than the B12 shot which was not working. In four months of shots I only raised my level 87 points. I am not even close to the normal range.  In my research, I also discovered that my ridiculously low B12 is also a contributing factor to the Psoriatic Arthritis and some of the other symptoms I have like poor metabolism. There is something interwoven in the inability for me to absorb B12 and what the impact the lack of this crucial vitamin causes in symptoms. I am now trying with the doctor’s suggestion  sublingual methylcobalamin 5000 MCG and folate 800mcg. This is over the counter and not uncommon in better pharmacies. It seems like there are so many things that this simple remedy will cure…not mask but alleviate. I had to do the work and the research. It really makes me upset but this is truly the path western medicine is headed. And customer service is a dying skill.

Winnie and Me

winnie the pooh
I just watched a wonderful webinar with Dr. Bruce Lipton who wrote the Biology of Belief. He is a biologist whose work with stem cells led him to some very interesting discoveries. Some of you may know his work. I read the book a while ago and was not able to “get it” all. Tonight’s webinar is in a series of Wednesday night offerings. Two weeks ago there was one that was like a wake up slap that led me to more understanding about the connection between the brains older systems and the connection to neuro imprinting to the way I live and why.

Tonight Dr. Lipton was talking about the fallacy that we are controlled by our genes. The way we are is not genetically predisposed at all. Matter of fact, according to the good Doctor, genes are not at all involved in why we do the things we do. He says that it is from the imprinting done in utero and up to the age of seven. I will try to explain his theory. And it is substantiated theory which I am personally engaged in understanding.

He explains that you take stem cells and put them in a petri dish, they will multiply exponentially until they create a new body of cells. He says the material they grow the cells in is basically man made blood and that the human body is a living petri dish. The correlation is the same for growing new cells and hence we survive biologically, growing new cells multiple times, just like the plastic petri dish.

But he says that what is different in his studies is that he could impact the cells in the petri dish by changing the environment. No frontal cortex there. In previous things I have read, and also in this webinar he talks about stress hormones and the impact they have on the body. We know that being under stress the body releases chemicals to react and to survive. There is no “thinking” when this happens. It is automatic. Matter of fact the thinking mind stops and the brain goes to a lower system that automatically “knows” what to do. He said they observed a change in the cellular makeup when they introduce stress chemicals such as cortisol even in the petri dish. This is just a real quick overview of what he was saying.

He said something I did not know and that I think was terribly important and connects more in the arena I have been studying. He said that an unborn child learns stress before he/she is born if the mother is stressed. The chemicals are transferred into the placenta and into the child. So a child whose mother is under stress will impact the child automatically, imprinting the circuitry that creates fear stimulating the fight, flight or freeze mechanisms. And once the child is born, that impact is continuous up until the age of seven. And why? Because children fire a different brain wave called theta, which is the same brain wave that accesses the subconscious in hypnosis and deep mediation.  Children are truly sponges and are constantly pulling information in and imprinting it in their subconscious. So if you live in an environment that is chaotic, abusive and violent as a child, imagine what that does. And as an adult, you may cognitively think you are not upset, or that things are not bothering you, but your body is off doing its own thing. And viola…

So I said something in a previous post about my science project. It continues and this week was not as successful as I had hoped it would be. I employed a tool and some other techniques to help stabilize my reactions and my physical well-being. Nope, did not work. I know this is going to be a long process because there is a lot to retrain, but I was disappointed in myself very much. I had a horrible day on Monday but thought I had everything under control. But I did not, and I reacted poorly which ended up making things worse. And even when I THOUGHT I was good, my body was preparing for battle. And so, I erupted at the wrong thing. Which afterwards, my physical condition went to hell. My gut instead of shutting down went the other way. I never know which it will be, which is fun. I have not slept well and now my left ankle is as big as a tree and pain is coursing through my body. Just in case you may not know, inflammation is a marker for stress but it often appears after the initial dosage of stress chemicals assaults the body. So, for me, there is a cyclical pattern, which believe me, I want to stop. I explode or get terribly depressed or a combination of the two, I tighten up all my muscles causing cramping and the inability to breathe deeply and my digestion is interrupted, followed by intense Psoriasis and arthritic flares which appear anywhere. Dr. Lipton talked about how babies who are stressed in utero often have digestion issues because the blood flow goes to the extremities and not the visceral organs. Instead the abundant cortisol transfers into fat and deposits in the abdomen to protect those organs. Hello…. I was born with huge digestion issues that were only resolved by giving me small feedings of  goat’s milk as an infant. My digestion or lack of it has plagued me my whole life. And my Winnie the Pooh shape is a testimony to the production of said deposits.

I know I have not discovered anything new. There is a lot of information coming out on all of this. There are a lot of reasons why but the answers to stopping it all seems to vary. But it is just a relief for me to know there are reasons things are the way they are. And I continue to learn.

The Signifigance of the Heron

Great Blue Heron on rock

Charlene on Rock

It is a quiet Saturday morning as I face this blank page trying to decide how to put into words some of the things I have learned in this very powerful week. For the past months there has been a lot of construction going on in my home and in my being. The house is out of my control because I am not doing the work. My contractor is an artist in remodeling and I will not rush him. I have learned that he certainly knows what he is doing and so I give him free reign on his craft in my home. He is the same man who did the work last spring on my garden and look how that turned out. The poor garden is buried under two feet of snow and crisscrossed with paths designed by little fur feet.

There is also a lot of construction going on in me. One of the things I did recently was to change my picture I used to identify myself on WordPress. I had a picture of my beloved Bishop who passed in November. I changed it only to represent the change I am feeling in myself. The heron is my favorite bird because of many reasons. But it is an amazing bird when you look at it. The have the most delicate legs and look like they would never get off the ground. They also are not particularly beautiful in comparison to other birds…..until they take flight. Then you see the strength and ability. It takes my breath every time I see one in flight close up. I know in my heart they are my spirit totem.

From Jamie Sams “Medicine Cards”: Heron medicine is the power of knowing the self by discovering the gifts and facing challenges. It is the ability to accept all feelings and opinions without denying any emotion or thought. Heron asks that they follow their intuition and begin the empowering journey of self-realization.

Charlene in flight

Charlene in flight

 

I was in love with the heron long before I started in this section of my journey. I am acutely aware that I have been on this path for a very long time without being aware of it. This became apparent to me when I was doing some quiet time thinking and realized how everything I have done in my life in some way has led me to this point. I know that is a moron’s comment. Of course I am here because I am. But the difference is before; I had no idea what I AM meant.

Charlene

To have less fear of judgment and ridicule has set me free to fly. I have much to learn still about protection and boundaries, but I am willing to learn and comprehend. Before, I had a huge block with those topics. There was much that was self-perpetuated that was stopping me and blocking me and yet I have kept on. Much like the impossibility of the heron to get off the ground, I have struggled but took flight.

I was also very focused on an end result. That is upbringing and being a teacher. Everything is measurable in some way and so I focused on a destination with a tangible result. I am not saying that I do not look for achievement or outcomes for myself. The difference is they are not the driving force. This frees me up to switch lanes or sample freely all that is presented. I have come to understand that what is supposed to stick resonates with me. I trust that sensation in my gut much more than ever.

Today the sun is out and the air is brilliant with sparkles of snow crystals shimmering in the air. It is very cold still and the ground is frozen and covered. But I know, I can feel it, there is growth as the light is elongating and the color shifts. I see more animals out and birds in the air, which is a true sign that spring is coming. I honor many of the old Wiccan or Pagan holidays and some Christian ones too. But this season is one of my favorite Pagan ones. Imbolc, which is in Christian tradition, Candlemas. It signifies the increasing light of spring arriving. It celebrates the birthing of lambs and actually means ‘ewes are with milk’. It is the beginning of the transition to spring and growth. It is very significant for me especially this year.Flying heron

Winter thoughts

My inside garden produced this to herald the coming of Imbolc

My inside garden produced this to herald the coming of Imbolc

 

On the wings of anticipation,

I wait for the arrival of springtime.

also from the inside garden a carnation from summer blooming in February

also from the inside garden a carnation from summer blooming in February

 

Tonight is fit for no man to venture in,

Only the big warriors with their flashing lights

And broad blades of steel,

Are able to combat the wind and snow.

I sit quietly in the warm comfort

And assurance that I do not need to worry,

snow coming down

snow coming down

 

For the only journey I will take tonight

Is within my mind.

garden in the snow

garden in the snow

all photos jdemeis@2013

 

Chosing Words

flame in falls

I got up out of bed this morning and my first thought was pain. Yes, I had a ton of it. But yesterday I had listened to a program from the Institute for Brain Potential. The DVD is a workshop on How We Heal Ourselves and Others. It is about communications and offered tools and awareness techniques. I have only listened to the first of four discs and got a lot out of it. She describes the fact that everyone has pain. It is a real and as part of our lives as breathing. Everyone will have pain at some point. She is Dr. Ruth Butterfield and she is very impressive in many ways. The thing that the good doctor wants us to differentiate is that pain is real and you will have it, but suffering is a choice.

Boy, did that resonate with me. It will take a while to settle in. “Suffering is a choice” Why would anyone choose to do that? And then I reflected on my day. I woke up with my usual pain and went about starting my day. Somewhere in the morning, the pain went to my lower back. It happens but this was way more than normal. I chose to ignore it and we went about our errands. This was maybe not wise because the day was filled with walking on cement floors shopping in big over bright locations for things for the house renovation. We spent almost two hours picking out things at Home Depot which has a horrible environment.  I was not aware of the pain in my back and feet until towards the end. But we continued on to two more places and then we had to haul everything into the house. I got to my chair and collapsed. The pain was so significant that I was crying. I was also suffering. I had not listened to the DVD yet.

I was grateful that the contractor was still working on the kitchen renovations since we left, but then he had removed all the contents of several cupboards and the stuff was everywhere. This too is not what I wanted as I needed to stoop to return stuff and bending to sort things out. We finally got things cleaned up and I am grateful that my husband was supportive and helpful. When we work together on things, we get through it faster and I am not resentful that he leaves it for me. Finally the house was back in order and quiet reigned in the house. I watched the DVD and it just rang true. When I just did what I had to do, I got through it. When I sat and let the pain overtake me, I suffered. My remedy was to just stop both. Once I allowed myself to relax, I did and the pain level was bearable.

I can take this concept to other things in my life. There is something happening in my work world. I do not know what it is but it is something big. This is based on things I saw on Friday but do not have the answer. I just know it is not good. I have been very displeased with the treatment of many of my coworkers and some things that have been happening. I feel the unrest there. I also feel the unrest in myself. I cannot explain it better than this for now. But I know there is transition coming and I feel it may not be good. Again, I have chosen to think that way. And I have chosen to suffer because of the frustration I feel.

My good friend Mariann keeps telling me there are wonderful things are coming my way. I do not see them. And unfortunately, because of my past, I am not able to trust that, right now. Trust is a new way of thinking that I am a novice in practice. However, if this was three years ago, right now I would be a totally mess. I would have perseverated myself right into a total whirlwind of worry and fear. I have to say, I am not fearful. I am a tad worried. I can deal with that because not being full of fear is so much better than living in a permanent state of being scared of life. There is even a small, and I do mean small, glimmer of anticipation of emancipation. I know in my head I cannot control whatever is coming down the pipe. (which is a great analogy and I chose that over the word pike) I can control the reaction and I can prepare myself in many ways, which I am doing. I am also choosing not to suffer, especially since there is nothing to suffer about except crap I put in my head.

The small, tiny flame of hope is that there is some ability now in my life to be a bit less panicky over my career. I am to a point in my life that I want to work, but I could survive if I needed to on all the resources I spent my life preparing. My husband is now semi-retired. He can substitute teach and chooses to do so. I was very upset at first about this, but I see that it really is for the better. I think it is hard to admit our ages and he is older than I am. He was ready to semi-retire. It was difficult to accept for me and I (we) suffered.

I am not there yet. But…..and this is the big kahuna… I do not know what I do want to do. I know what I do not want to do and that is work for or in oppressive and condescending environments. Returning back to the small internal flame, I realize I do have the power to have that no matter where I am working. It is the difference again of being in pain or suffering.  So with that in mind, I will wait to see what transpires on Monday, if anything. Believe, this is not easy for me to do and will take a conscious effort to not go there in my head.

As far as the pain, I too can chose to deal with it. And this is where a total change of mind is occurring. I am not going to get rid of the pain itself. I have a disease that will run its course in due time. But I need to accept it instead of fighting it. Every warrior knows that there are times when you need to let the horse rest and there is no shame in that. I know for fact that when I let the pain over take me, I am nasty and woeful. I chose the word woeful because it was in the vein of suffering. I am going to seriously try to let things take their course in the world around me and that is part of the emancipation. I am not going to say too much more about this because I cannot articulate it even if I wanted to. It is just a feeling, a small glimmering flame.