No One is Trying to be Somewhere Else

B8114BE8-C3B4-450D-A036-4BE72B635120My volunteer experience in building the largest Kadampa International Retreat Center in the US. 

Seasoned meditators have a way of dealing with life like non other I have ever experienced. Their “feathers don’t get ruffled” when things go awry or not as planned.

I have witnessed this on several occasions.

  1. While cleaning the kitchen, I knocked a glass salt shaker off a shelf, and it landed on top of a crystal goblet, spraying shards of glass all over the counter tops, and countless stacks of dishes. The only thing that could be done was to take everything off the shelves, and rewash them.  It was fifteen minutes prior to everyone being finished with their shift.  The entire kitchen came to help me clean, and wash the dishes. The only words spoken after I profusely apologized were “it’s ok we have all been there.”
  2. Not one person is wearing ear phones to listen to music. Its not a rule, it’s just their desire to respectively and happily be present.
  3. The start of each shift is honored by being on time and break times are never extended. If there task is not complete, they stay till it is finished.

I hear over and over again their only wish is to obtain a peaceful mind.

I have been to the kitchen, and I know what I want for breakfast.

Day#2 I have to give up something?

33655D2C-B4DB-41E9-A354-4E2DAC563C6CI woke up this morning thinking of the New Resolution I set in motion, and realized my day was full.  Then I told myself, “something’s got to give.”

After meditation, I usually begin my work day by checking messages.  IPhone has this lovely new feature that sends you a message daily letting you know how much screen time you have used. Since I did not delete any extraneous messages, such as this one, from the day before, it graciously shared with me yet again, the time I devoted to starring at my screen.

Needless to say, I found the hour I will need everyday to commit to my resolution.

Change always requires a “letting go” of something that no longer serves you in order to make room for the very thing you want in your life that will be of significant value.

 

If you are just now tuning in, you can go back to read my post on Dec. 31st.  (A New Resolution) explaining my challenge.

 

 

Cheers to Good Health

Cheers to Good health

My mother had knee replacement surgery on April 16, 2018. April 26, she was diagnosed with stage 3 esophageal cancer.
She was not scheduled to start radiation until June 13th and Chemo June 15th. The Dr. explained she would undergo 28 days of continued radiation and a round of chemo once a week for 6 weeks. They would give her a month break. Then surgery to remove what she had left, and start radiation and chemo all over again after surgery.
Our goal as a family was to support our mother in strengthening her body which would support her during her treatment.
For the last month, we worked on changing her diet. Lots and lots of organic fresh vegetables and berries; raspberries, blueberries, and blackberries. (all high in antioxidants) Every morning we juiced for her. Juicing helps to detox and alkalize the body, and increase the immune system. We added protein shakes (Vega Organic Proteins and more greens:)) which helps to maintain muscle, fight infection and also helps to strengthen the immune system
We eliminated processed sugar, gluten, dairy and red meat. No MSG and No microwave use. This elimination reduces inflammation in her body (Inflammation causes an acidic environment in which cancer cells thrive on).
We added cannabis oil to reduce stress, anxiety, and nausea.
We walked as much as she felt comfortable to do so. This was two-fold as she needed the rehab for her knee to heal and to help keep her body strong.
She listens to positive mediations and my father and mother have prayed the rosary every day together. This helped keep her positive.
On June 29th my parents received news from the Dr. that her blood work came back normal with the exception of low sodiumlp. The Dr. was amazed! He said to keep up the good work. He said with the results we have seen we have decided to only give you one more round of chemo and 2 more weeks of radiation. At this point, you will not need to start this all over in a month. When we are done with this round we will do another scope and see where things are at that point. But everything looks fabulous!
This was music to our ears!
A note to those who are in the supporting role of caring for a loved one.
Treat each day as an anomaly, because it is. Every moment provides a different experience. Don’t own the diagnosis. Own the steps to recovery. When the patient is feeling down, remind them that this too shall pass.
Get them out of the house as much as they feel up to it. This helps elevate mood for both the patient and the caregiver. If they are not able to go outside and are feeling down, find something they like to do and do that with them. The point is to keep the mind from ruminating on what doesn’t feel pleasant in the moment.
Keep the atmosphere positive. This helps to keep stress at bay. Help them to remember every positive change. Sometimes it hard for them to see the positive changes when they are in the midst of treatment.
No matter how BIG your heart is and your intention behind your giving, if the person you are caring for doesn’t want whatever it is you’re offering, let go and trust the process. It’s their journey.
Thank you, everyone, for your continued support! We feel so BLESSED!

Sweet Dreams are Made of This…

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This last year I chose to focus on having a healthy relationship with God, myself, my children, my family, food, and money.

I began by asking myself if am I acting out of obligation, duty, guilt and or fear and if so, I practiced responding differently.

Two days ago my friend wanted me to agree with her perspective. I perceived her situation as unhealthy. Instead of me agreeing with her out of guilt for fear she would be mad at me, I let her have her feelings and let her know even though I disagreed with her situation, I still valued our friendship.

Last night I specifically dedicated my meditation towards the intention of having healthy relationships.

In my dream, I dreamt I ran over my glasses. I interpreted this to mean I destroyed the crutch of my outdated perception.

That morning I received a text from my friend that was honest and sincere, owning her intention for me to agree with her and requesting her need for space. It was so refreshing.

As I continue to open up to living a more healthy and balanced life, it is being reflected in my relationships.

#youhavejustarrived #author #yourlifeinbalance

 

Thai Chi

Thai Chi is a form of martial arts known for its self-defense techniques, and it’s health benefits. It’s considered a “meditation in motion.”
It’s precise movements choreographed with the breath invite peace and harmony to those who practice this dance.

I started taking Thai Chi classes and my teacher is a Chinese Saint. He is very patient, very kind and very forgiving of a white girl who can’t dance.
I am just a sayin’ I am not a ballerina on the dance floor. I learned how to dance waiting for the bathroom.

We go over and over a few basic moves and then he decides to throw a cog in a less than well-oiled machine.
I have now added courageous to his attributes. He decides to lend me his antique sword from the Qing Dynasty and says, be mindful, yours has a tip! At least that’s what I think he is saying in Chinese, because he is pointing at the end of the sword, and when I look at everyone else’s, and no one has a sharp tip but mine. What? No, I say, I think I would be better suited for the Nerf edition. He just smiles and bows. He must have an ulterior motive.

You don’t believe this white girl can’t dance do you?

 

…and if you haven’t maimed or killed your classmates, you get to play with fans.