Friday, October 22, 2010

One Hour Miracle

I received a note today from Bonnie McFarland who writes a website called Savouring Your Sixties, She writes about women who are approaching or are in their sixties and beyond and she shares her insight on how to light up your life.  The article today was how to take a brief moment or hour to yourself in a time of sorrow and grief and re-energize and recharge your soul.  I thought it was worth sharing.  Joylicious!

The One-Hour Miracle

Hours after my brother called to say Mom had died, I was on a red-eye flight traveling across the country. The days that followed were filled with grief, seemingly endless tasks to prepare for mom's funeral, family dynamics, stress, and many nights of too little sleep.

Of course, it wasn't all bad. There was love and laughter and reminiscing and being with people I love. And still as the week went on, I was beyond exhausted.

Somewhere in the midst of this my dear sister and I decided to get pedicures. We would both be wearing sandals for the funeral and, frivolous as it might sound, we thought we needed freshly painted toes.

Of course, there wasn't really time to do this. We had so many other things to get done. (It's amazing how much there is to do when someone dies!)

But we decided to do it anyway. So my sister, Vicki, my sister-in-law, Diane, and I went in search of a pedicure. Someone was watching out for us because we found a place where we could all get pedicures at the same time without having appointments.

Plus this little day spa also happened to have those fancy massage chairs that can work you from head to toe -- while you're getting your pedicure!

For one delicious and delightful hour, it was as though life was normal again. For that hour, we were no longer bereaved mourners; we were just three women relaxing, chatting, and allowing ourselves to be pampered. Afterwards, we each had lovely, bright, shiny polish on our toes.

But what mattered more was how much restoration we got from that one hour. That was the miracle!

Weeks later, I'm still astonished when I recall how much difference that hour made for me. I reconnected with the place of calm, quiet, and peace in me. I became refreshed and restored. I regained enough strength and energy to allow me to do what needed to be done the rest of the week. All that from one hour. Amazing!

I know a little bit of time -- spent in an energizing, enlivening, lights-on way -- can make a huge difference in our lives. And this experience was a powerful reminder of that.

Copyright Bonnie McFarland 2010 All Rights Reserved"

Thursday, October 21, 2010

It's About Gratitude

I'm back!  Just wanted to thank everyone for the well wishes I received during my recent bout with the flu.  It's so nice to have people worry about you!

During my down time I reflected quite a bit on my life and current situations.  It's so easy when I'm not feeling well for me to fall into a depression.  I start to stress over the smallest things and dwell on misfortunes and "lack of" instead of counting my blessings. I worry about bills, work, relationships, my car, my cats, my dad, my daughter.  Instead I should be focusing on getting better and thinking good thoughts.

I've always been of the opinion that your thoughts create your reality.  I try to stay positive and focused.  I try to visualize myself happy, healthy and wealthy.  I try to be a good person and avoid negative thoughts.  I try to not worry.  But I need to stop trying and just be.  I need to put myself in God's hands and let him do the work and the worrying and just be grateful for my joylicious life.

A good friend gave me some advise the other day to help me get well.  I think it works in many situations and wanted to pass it on to you.  It was such a sweet affirmation of the goodness of people and life.

-Rest as much as you can and put in your mind the thought of gratitude for being healthy (even though you are not at the moment) but that thought will send a command to the rest of your body to heal itself.
- Eat some chicken soup (home made).
- Drink hot lemon tea with honey.
- And watch some funny movies or pictures to make you laugh and boost your immune system.
I hope you feel better soon!

So let's try and put our mind in the thought of gratitude.  Not just for being healthy but being happy and joylicious too!  Life is wonderful!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Waves of Grief

 My dad and I recently attended a grief support group at Swedish Hospital/Edmonds (formerly Stevens Hospital).  We were given a handout titled The Waves of Grief.  I thought it was really good and wanted to share it with you.  I think personally I am in the last stage but as it states grief does come in waves and sometimes I notice myself going back a few stages before coming out stronger as I move forward again.

The Waves of Grief – Swedish/Edmonds Bereavement Program

The concept of the “waves” of grief may be helpful to you as you begin to make sense of your reactions following the death of your loved one.  Often this time may seem to lack purpose and direction.  With the goals of healing and rediscovering meaning in life, the following may be useful to you.

Coming to terms with the reality of your loss.  The saying, “the only way out is through” is true of grief.  The more you allow yourself to go through the myriad of emotions, the more you will move toward healing.  Be gentle with yourself, allow yourself to cry, laugh, rest when you can get regular exercise, eat nourishing food, and care for your spiritual self.  And remember to BREATHE deeply as much as possible.  These self-care activities are important now, and will remain important in the months ahead.  Continuing to seek the support of understanding people, while caring for yourself on all levels, can help you begin to realize that you can recover the coping skills necessary to move forward in your life.

Learning what it means to live without your loved one.  Gradually you will find yourself learning to adjust to a world in which your loved one is no longer living.  The work ahead of you is to discover the place your loved one filled in your life, and to consider what tasks and roles may need to be assumed by you, or by others, and what changes may need to occur.  Of course, some aspects of his/her place in your life will never be assumed by another.  This is also the time to look at what it means to change your relationship with your loved one from a relationship of the present to a relationship of memory – in memory, he/she is always with you.

Beginning to develop a new identity, a new sense of yourself.  Here is where you may begin to discover what really matters and has meaning for you.  For many, this is a time of reprioritizing life activities, developing a deeper spirituality, and appreciating the preciousness of life.

This journey has no timetable.  You may experience any of these waves in your own unique way, and maybe at recurrent or concurrent times.  Anniversaries or future losses are often times when people feel they are going through the waves again.  Care lovingly, gently and patiently for yourself.  Remember to give yourself credit for each small step you take.  You are journeying toward healing.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Makes You Say Hmmmm....

I received this Note from the Universe the other day that read, "Simply put, the reason there are things you want that have not yet appeared in your life, is because you're just not used to thinking of yourself with them".  It got me to thinking... I have struggled with my weight since I was 21 years old and even had a complex about my weight before that.  I was never truly small or slim.  I've always been curvy no matter how large or small.  So I have a really hard time thinking of myself as a thin person.

They say that athletes should visualize themselves winning.  Crossing the finish line in first place.  Why can't I visualize myself as healthy and slim?  Or at least normal size?  Even when I lost 60 pounds 3 years ago, whenever I looked in the mirror I still saw a very fat person.  I remember one day I was shopping in a fabric store and as I was waiting to be checked out the cashier made some catty comment to me about a woman who was shopping.  She was overweight and the woman said something like, "a woman that size should never wear an outfit like that".  I turned to see who she was talking about and realized the woman was the size I visualized in my head that I looked like!  So I was surprised when it dawned on me that the cashier didn't view me that way.

I think it was the first time since I had lost the weight that I figured out I was truly smaller to the rest of the world.  Yes I had lost 3 dress sizes and yes I felt really good but I didn't think or see myself being that way.  I think it equates to people who are anorexic and never see themselves as that way either. So maybe what the Universe message to me was to start visualizing myself thin.  To day dream about the clothes I will be wearing and look at myself with clearer eyes and realize that I'm on the right road.  I've lost 27 pounds so far and my pants are starting to get baggy.  I need to adjust my thinking to accomodate that loss and realize it's a great one!  And it will only get better.  Joylicious!

Friday, October 1, 2010


I hit a personal milestone this morning.  It's a loss I'm happy to report!  I have lost a total of 25 pounds on my diet!  I now weigh what I weighed a year ago before I started the nightmare rounds of hormones and bio-identicals that started some of my weight gain.  I am now looking forward to the next goal of another loss of 20 pounds.  That would make me joyliciously happy!!