Altered, cont’d

via Pinterest

via Pinterest


I’ve been noticing how I have been altered since John’s phone call the other morning.  My feelings of anxiety and apprehension around him have turned to compassion, concern, and support.  We live far removed from each other.  800 miles and many years separate us.  I’ve only met his family once, perhaps twice, and then only briefly.  Our lives have carried on without each other.  And yet, of course, with the news of the death of my former husband’s stepson, the estrangement falls away.  Rightly so.  I want to help.  I can’t begin to imagine what he and his family are experiencing with this tragedy.  They’re living the unthinkable;  the unimaginable.  Every parent’s worst nightmare.  This is their reality now.  And I want to send them support, love, comfort.  Small tokens.  Small, yet I believe that compounded with the hundreds of ways they’re being loved and supported by their family and friends at home it all adds up to something that will help to carry them through this time.  At least that is my wish for them.

Calling hours are this evening from 5-8pm.  We won’t be traveling to West Virginia for the services.  But tonight at 5pm Marleigh, Delaney, and I will be lighting two candles:  one for Ethan, who lost his life on the evening of September 30th, and another for those who love and were loved by him.  We will burn the candles for the duration of tonight’s service.  I invite you to join us in lighting a candle tonight.  In support of John and Susan and their family if you like, or in support of anyone else who is suffering and in great pain.  Please share your stories if you like.  I’m always grateful to hear them, because we’re all in this together, aren’t we.  And when it comes down to it, it’s the love and support we share that  help each other through it all.


True Love Feast on Your Life

Feast on Your Life


Love After Love

The time will come

when, with elation, you will greet yourself arriving

at your own door,

in your own mirror,

and each will smile at the other’s welcome

and say, sit here.  Eat.

You will love again the stranger who was your self.

Give wine.  Give bread.

Give back yor heart

to itself, to the stranger who has loved you


all your life, whom you ignored

for another, who knows you by heart.

Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,


the photographs, the desperate notes,

peel your own image from the mirror.

Sit.  Feast on your life.


-Derek Walcott


Flipping through my recent issue of Spirituality & Health magazine I came upon this poem.  It was like running into an old friend.  I had a copy of this on my bedroom wall for years, and reminded my daughters of it.  “You know, the poem with the billowing curtains around it?”   “Oh yea,” the said, feigning interest.  I was delighted, regardless.  When I first pinned it to my wall, I felt in my bones that it was true.  Yet, I didn’t experience it, that notion of loving oneself.  We’ve all heard it said that we can’t truly love another until we truly love ourselves.  I know I have.  A bazillion times.  When I first discovered this poem I was going through a nasty divorce and found myself raising two small girls alone. I didn’t know how I was going to do this.  I was afraid I would ruin the lives of these small angels.  Didn’t know how I would financially support the three of us on my own as a massage therapist in a rural town.   I felt unprepared.  Alone.  Beaten-down.  Depleted.  Exhausted.  So I pinned this poem to my wall with the notion that maybe if I read it daily, something would shift.  Loving myself felt a bit far-fetched. But perhaps it would at least help to quiet those punitive voices of criticism and self-doubt that ruled my days.  I kept going, putting one foot in front of the other.  Somehow, I’ve managed to support my family.  Miraculously, I’ve raised two brilliant young women.  No, we’re not done yet, they’re in their early- and mid-teens.  But we’re a tight, loving, pretty dynamic family, if I do say so myself.  My daughters are making their marks in the world in their own unique and beautiful ways, and I’m confident they will continue to do so.  We’ve done alright.  I have done alright.  Have I come to truly love myself?  Well, I still have a ways to go on that one.  But I can look at myself in the mirror with joy and pride, even love.  I’ve come a long way from those days of fear and exhaustion and self-doubt.  Over the years I have learned how to give myself wine and bread.    I am actually feasting on my own life.

Healing the World

Yesterday, I finished a 21 day Meditation exercise with Deepak Chopra.  It wasn’t one-on-one, but it felt like it.  Along with dozens of thousands of others, I joined Deepak daily via the internet for a guided meditation exercise.  It was a lovely, deepening experience.  I also love that he taught me more sanskrit mantras.  Those mantras are wonderfully helpful to me to quiet my mind when it gets too busy.  They help me center, and ground myself.  I have a number of other tools that assist with that too, but that’s another day’s writing.  At the close of our 21 days “together”, Deepak told us:  “As you elevate your abundant consciousness, you do your part to heal the world.”  I love this notion.  And I firmly believe it’s true.  It takes my little mantra of “when we take care of ourselves, we can take care of all the other things so much better” to another level.  My spiritual counselor, Mary Muncil, has worked with me over the past few years to understand that when I “vibrate at a higher level” I not only raise my own spiritual awareness, but I also help clear the way for others to do the same.  That too is the same notion that Deepak is expressing.  Taking care of ourselves, vibrating at a higher frequency, elevating our consciousness.  These are things we do for ourselves.  They are not “selfish” in a negative way that detracts from others’ experiences.  These things we do for ourselves to help ourselves actually help everyone on some level.  When we heal ourselves, we help heal humanity and the planet.  When we are happy and joyful, we share that and help raise others to that place.  Joy is contagious.  Love is epidemic.  Health is expansive.

Have a wonderful day.  Take really good care of yourself.  You are healing the world.

Thank You, thank you, thank you

Cape Perpetua, OR. Thankful for this great trip and my amazing friend, Patty, in Oregon! Love you, Patts!

Just counting my blessings.  Something I TRY to do every day, not just this honored holiday of giving thanks.  So Thank You.  Thank you to all my wonderful clients, and may I have a positive impact on your health and on your life.  Thank you to anyone and everyone reading this and may I inspire you on some level to take good care of yourself.  Thank you to my beloved daughters, and may I bring you as much joy as you bring me!  Thank you to my extended family and may you feel as loved and supported by me as I’ve been by you.  Thank you to my circle of friends and may we continue to be the family we’ve grown into.  Thank you thank you thank you.  Life is great!

Wishing you peace, joy, comfort, and good health today and always.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving and take really good care of yourself.