It has been quite some time since I last posted. It seems life sometimes gets in the way of good intentions. I have been operating a special residence for seniors and disabled and these last several months, with the help of my brother Dave, his friend Odie and my helper Joe, we have been doing some much needed remodeling and renovations. I have also have used my newly acquired technological skills to build a website for this endeavor in which I am so very proud. We provide a much needed service….making senior/disabled residential more affordable and community oriented. Our model is based on living well no matter how old or how disabled we are. We are not our aches, pains (which are a part of life) nor can we be defined by our disabilities. We are all capable of sharing the precious gifts that lie within us with each other and the community at large. Our motto is “Even though I have my challenges, I can have a good day anyway. I can make a good life for myself in any circumstance.” Living from this mind-set, I can say that in the ten years I have been operating The Cottage, my residents seem to thrive and no one has had any major incidents requiring the need of emergency medical services. What we think about really does have an affect on the quality of our lives. Thanks for reading this. pamela
How does one thrive? Having an attitude of gratitude. Being grateful pushes one forward in what they are passionate about. Living from a place of gratitude and thankfulness crowds out discontent and discouragement. It allows us to be more positive. And when we are in a positive space, we are more focused on what is right about our lives; what moves us closer to that which we love and are passionate about. Wayne Dyer said that too many of us are too easily offended by things (paraphrase). When I’m being negative and critical about those things finding their way into my life and finding reasons to be offended, I don’t have much room to find the good in my life. I can’t find the “bless in the mess” and then I miss out on opportunities to thrive and move forward with my life. Today, when I find myself being easily offended about things that are none of my business, I commit to finding something I can be grateful for and focus on that. I will put myself in an atmosphere where I can thrive.
Most of us have traveled by plane and know the pre-flight instruction, “Should your oxygen mask drop because of pressure issues in flight, place the oxygen mask on yourself first and then help the individual next to you who may need help next to you”. (paraphrase) Why? Because if we don’t have proper oxygen we will not be able to effectively help the person next to us who needs our help. And so it is in perhaps one of the most stressful times of the year. If we don’t take time to care for and nurture ourselves, those that we are doing so much for so that they have the “perfect Holiday” won’t be having the enjoyable holiday that we are working so hard to create. In stress and anxiety, we aren’t able to focus, think and concentrate as well as when we feel rested, calm relaxed and at ease. We can be more present to those we love and care about and that is what we are really trying to create in the first place. The holidays aren’t about the gifts and goodies. Those are just symbols of what we really want to create at this time of year. We’re trying to create closeness, connection and memories that live on in our hearts and minds, for it is these memories that carry us through our day to day trials and tribulations and the exciting, awesome times as well. So during these next few days, take time, quiet your mind, slow down, have a cup of tea and savor the sweet sights and scents of the season. And Live long, live well and thrive.
This past week I had the unfortunate experience of being betrayed and ripped off by a legal professional. My wounded and bruised ego is still screaming. My spiritual self is trying to make sense of the WHY. Why me; why can’t we just do the right thing; why do we create so much pain in each others lives? But even bigger, Why do I keep getting into situations where I end up being ripped off? What in me gives others permission to take advantage of me? It comes down to the learning curve. I’m going to keep repeating this until I finally get the lesson. What is the lesson? This time round, I quickly realized that I’m tired of fighting back and arguing and adding to the drama. I ask myself “What do I want? Do I want to fight to get my $5000 back from someone who scammed me, creating negative consequences for my physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health. Or do I want to be well….protecting my well-being? How much more life energy do I want to give away to this individual. Do I fight and continue the struggle and negative energy which ultimately travels out into the rest of my world? Or do I just walk away and move forward with my life, pursuing my goals and dreams. Nurturing my vision and creating the life and the existence that I am drawn to? These are hard questions. I want both. I want this person to get his. I also want to be peaceful. I want to be comfortable and relaxed. I can’t have peace when I’m fighting with someone. My heart says, “walk away”. My ego has a tantrum! The lesson, maybe this time, is thinking about what is best for me. What I most need to be healthy, happy and at peace. I walk away not for this person’s benefit; not to let him off the hook. I walk away to protect my own health and well-being. This is for me…it’s doing the right thing for me. It’s the hardest thing….but it’s the right thing.
One of Henry Thoreau’s deepest desires was to live deliberately. For him, that meant getting quiet, taking time everyday to think about what he thinks about. For me, like so many of us, it seems we get so caught up in the busy-ness of life that we live our lives from a point of reactivity rather than acting from a place of reflectivity. Most often, we act unconsciously and by rote. Are we becoming “unconscious rote-arians?” We are so busy doing all the things that our dominate culture says we must do in order to fit in, that we end up missing the very fabric of our lives. We miss the intricate patterns and vibrant colors of the uniquely individual lives that we embody. Not only do we more and more frequently feel that we have lost control of our lives, but we slowly slide into a self-slumber of forgetting who we are, why we are here and what we want from our one precious life. When we have lost ourselves in this way, it is very difficult for us to live well and thrive.
Recipe for today: Take a 10 minute time out and think about what you think about.
Live well, be happy and thrive.
Several years ago I was employed to help a young 8 year old boy after school with his homework, drive him to his after school events and basically look after him until his parents came home from work. His name was Joey. Joey was a bright and sensitive boy who loved nature and baseball. He played Little League at the local rec department. Each week for his spelling and vocabulary homework, he had to make sentences using the spelling words for the week. One week the words “journey” and “courage” were on the list. He came up with this sentence, “You need to have courage to go on a journey.” That one sentence shined a light on me in a remarkable way. You see, I was recovering from a brain injury from a motor vehicle accident that had me feeling lost and a bit sorry for myself. It was a wake up call from an 8 year old. Needless to say, it helped me change how I live my life. Several years later, I learned that Joey, at age 10 had been diagnosed with a brain tumor and after several years of living with this brain tumor and all the treatments and medications, he died at age 16. It struck me that at 8 years old this child, somewhere in his precious soul understood the courage he would need for his journey. It is something worth reflecting upon. Blessings to all of you travel on your life’s journey.
This past weekend, after celebrating the grand opening of the holiday season with Thanksgiving Day on Thursday, for many our “black Friday” shopping started barely after the turkey leftovers had been put away and the holiday china and crystal washed and dried. The “black Friday” images were truly disturbing to me. Where is our humanity and our civility? Think about it, to save a couple hundred bucks! We resort to animalistic behaviors. Seriously! As you can see, I clearly have issues with “black Friday” and the behaviors surrounding it. If we truly want to live a long life and one in which we thrive on all levels, we need to create spaces in our lives that provide a sense of calm, quiet and well-beingness. Behaviors I witnessed over the weekend serve only to “jack us up” more into the frenzy that the holidays have become. We become so stressed out by having to have it all perfect, do it all perfect that we loose the sense of the real meaning of the season. We need to quiet down and take time for ourselves just to relax into this real special time we celebrate every year. What good is saving $200 on a TV set we can’t enjoy because we’ve killed ourselves with high stress and living an unbalanced lifestyle? All the stuff and toys in the world is not going to feed our yearning for connection, acknowledgement and love.
Dear God, We are so blessed. You have graciously given us our lives, our loves and all that is. You chose to live in us, through us and as us. You manifest your greatness in all of us and in all things. For this we are forever grateful. We are awed that you have chosen us to manifest you in the world. You have abundantly blessed us with everything we need to represent you…all our thoughts, words, actions and all our talents and gifts. All these things come from you so that we may live full and complete lives; lives of goodness and opportunity; of abundance and fullness. For all these things, we are forever grateful. And so it is in his divine name.
My prayer and my deepest wish for all of you is that you feel the love, joy and peace and the comfort from your loved ones and that you may continue in your gratitude to thrive and have a deliciously long and loving life. Happy Thanksgiving from Pamela.
It’s day before Thanksgiving. Where has the time gone! It seems like just yesterday that I last posted….it’s been 3 weeks! For me it’s been several weeks of cross country travelling with one of my residents who has a debilatating disease and battling an upper respiratory infection. Ah….tis the season; of colds and flu and non-stop running around; of shopping, planning, list-making, baking and decorating. Of all things consuming our time and energy in efforts to please and make everything just right for the kick 0ff day of the holiday season.Thanksgiving is a day set aside for us to take time to remember all that we have and all who we have. Unfortunately, with all our planning and doing we often forget and don’t make time to remember the reason why we sit down to mounds and mounds of food and goodies. We do this to remember how abundantly blessed we are in ways that we forget to acknowledge on a daily basis. We forget the reason why we take the 3rd Thursday of the eleventh month to get together with friends and family for a feast. My hope is that in the next few days you take a brief pause in your day to just remember and be grateful.
The holidays are just around the corner and for many of us our stress levels jump up another 10 degrees. It’s Halloween, which its seems in the last few years, marks the beginning of the holiday season. Remember the days when the day after Thanksgiving was the official start of the season! It seems like Christmas, Hannakuh, Kwanza and the other celebration days that are a part of wintertime are showing up earlier and earlier in our department stores, on-line and in the advertising world. This head start on preparing for the holidays often only serves to increase our stress and dread levels to the max. So it is important to pay attention to what we allow ourselves and our families to take on during this season. Typically, we want to do it all and do it all perfectly. So, we often exhaust ourselves, trying to create the perfect, albeit, mythical holiday. Over the next several posts, my intention is to provide tips, ideas, support and encouragement to help us all get through the holidays in a way that speaks to the real meaning of the celebrations; love, joy, peace and togetherness with our families, friends and those we are close to. HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!!