Cancer aftermath

I have several friends who have had cancer and are in remission. When this happens people begin to see them as back to normal. Most people are unaware of how much courage is involved in continuing to move forward. There are periodic scans and you have to wait for results. It can be a time of nail biting and stress.

after cancer

Chemotherapy also can have devastating consequences. The medicines that make you well can also cause major problems with the well systems in your body. There are many things that can go wrong from failure of other organs to hair, skin, teeth problems. It is not an easy path.

Hopefully the future will bring us closer to our own immune system removing the cancer from our body without hurting anything else.

survive cancer

Remember those who struggle with the aftermath of cancer treatment. They need our continuing compassion and support.

New year, new changes

every-end-is-a-new-beginning-quote-3At this time of year people are thinking about the New Year. 2020. I never expected to see that year. My mind just couldn’t get that far but here we are. I don’t do resolutions. Instead I like to think about habits.

If we want to change anything about our life we have to start with ourselves and the only way to make changes stick is by having them become habits. During 2019 I managed to begin some positive things that I wanted to stick. I am glad to say that those changes are now habits. Making something a habit is hard word. In the beginning we have to push ourselves. We keep wanting to say “I’m not gonna do that today…I’ll do it tomorrow.” We skip one day and then the next and the change is just gone.

daily routineIf we struggle and work to keep on one day we will find that the change is not a struggle at all. It has become a habit. We have powered past that hard part and something good and new has happened.

If you have in mind to make any changes in 2020 forget about grandiose plans. Pick small changes and work on them one at a time. When one succeeds it makes it easier to take on the next one.

Keep on

Well Christmas is over. It will come again next year.Now we need to think about what lies ahead. It’s been hard for me to think of what’s next. I know I will go back to my Community Conferencing. I know that there are other things that I have been doing that I will keep on doing.Writing is 1 of the most important of those.

It is a joy to be able to share my experiences and my thoughts. It is a joy to have a community so caring. Each of us has a story to tell. It is important to share that story so it maybe help other people.We learn from the experiences of others and ourselves.

1 of the lessons that I have learned in recent years is that things change frequently. The only thing consistent is change.We have to adapt To live.Without Gaining the strength and courage to move forward each day we would not be able to survive. Life is a challenge but it is also a joy. Each moment is precious And should be savored.

Remember that life is a gift.We are so blessed to have the opportunity to live each day. Don’t take that gift for granted. It can be taken away so easily. Love each and every day to the fullest. Even if it’s a struggle continue to move on.

Plan a joyous holiday

being happyChristmas is coming fast. I hope that I can shake off some of the “tireds” and get everything done. I love this time of year but it is really hectic. It is also a difficult time for those who are suffering from grief or any other crisis. We need to be mindful of others and help where we can. If you have a friend who has no family to be with include them in your festivities.

For years we had another family joining us for Christmas dinner. The dad in the family had died and we made them part of ours. My family is noted for what my kids called “taking in strays.”

This can be a lonely time for others. I had to adjust to not having all my children around when they married, had families of their own, and moved away. Life is ever changing and we have to be willing to change with it. I choose to accept the joy that I have instead of longing for the things I don’t have. The past is gone and now is where we are.

holidays_podcast

Celebrate the holidays in any way that works for you. Take a day for yourself. Do something special just for you. Plan something with friends. Don’t sit home and be sad. You can make a choice. Plan ahead!

Clean out those mental closets

clean-out-your-closet-Wayne-L.-Misner-quote

Sometimes while thinking about our life we can see the places where we went off the track. It can be quite disturbing. Often we don’t want to open the doors of those closets where we have stored our missteps. The truth is that is how we learn. Looking back we can usually see very clearly how we stumbled off the path. The good news is we can also see how we got back on it.

Don’t be afraid to throw open the doors of your mental closets, sweep out the dirt, and leave it clean. Each day of life is an opportunity to learn something new. Take advantage of it.

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Keep going

Believe-1-575x675If there is one thing I have learned in the last week it is that a 79 year old does not bounce back. My husband has had several surgeries in the last few years…mostly from jumping out of airplanes in the army. I have had none. I have always been supportive of him during his recoveries but I am not sure I have appreciated just how hard it is to get back to your best you can be.

He has been so supportive and kind to me with this surgery which was not a bad one (as surgeries go), I guess experience is the best teacher.

I have no complaints today other than being tired. I am usually the energizer bunny but have had to listen to my body and rest. I am grateful that everything went so well.

I have always spent a lot of time crossing bridges before getting to them. This time I was better than usual. I think the time I have spent learning new habits and applying the needed skills did make a difference. My journey to be “worryless” is advancing. I’m not at the end but making progress. We can get better but it does take work. Seeing this improvement encourages me to continue my efforts and keep going.

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I think that it is easy to get discouraged when we can’t see progress but it will come with time. Just work your way through one day before considering the next. Things can change.

Preparing for surgery with new focus

The events of the last few weeks have been stressful but organized. I am to have surgery on Friday to remove the other half of my thyroid. It is pressing on my trachea. The Dr. visits and pre-surgery were especially good with pleasant, wonderful, caring people and greatly efficient. The whole process has gone exceedingly smooth. It was moved from Tuesday Dec. 3 to this Friday as the Dr. decided to work that day. Now just to get it done and headed back to my ??normal?? self. The surgery itself it not difficult we just don’t want to find any unexpected problems.

consistency (1)

As part of my journey I have worked hard on finding new ways to reduce anxiety in my life and some of it is paying off. My consistency with prayer, meditation and focus on each day has really improved. That doesn’t mean that there haven’t been moments but nothing like before I started this journey.

Consistency and a determination to live more fully and joyfully are making a difference. I may succeed in conquering it before I shuffle off the planet. The lesson learned it that no matter how many times spent backsliding getting up and going on it what matters. Each day is progress….maybe not so visible but it is there.

candle hands

If you pray keep me in your prayers and if not send good thoughts my way.

Losing Freedom

One of my favorite writers https://earthwalkingworld.wordpress.com/2019/11/16/let-the-looting-begin/   began his post today talking about the freedom we achieve when we are first able to drive. I would like to talk about the opposite problem

As we grow older our ability to drive can decline. Whether it is due to vision, slowed reaction time or mental losses we may have to stop driving. In many European countries this is not such an issue since public transportation can take someone anywhere. Those who live in city centers can walk many places and if they are able to do that don’t lost that freedom.

innovation in aging

For most of us who live in the US driving is our key to mobility and therefore our independence. The hardest thing to convince us as we age is that we can no longer drive. For those who have enough money to Uber everywhere it may not be a problem but the majority can’t do that.

For those who live alone losing the ability to drive can cause isolation which leads to depression and going downhill. I wish there were a simple solution but there really isn’t one. As the age of our population increases the problem will become more acute.

Creating a volunteer group of drivers who would be willing to help people run their errands and be with friends would be a good solution. I wonder if anyone has done this if so I haven’t heard of it. I hope someone does it in the future.

There is more to learn

fire-fireplace-flame-hot-heat-embers-orange-glow-imad-bendjeddou

Yesterday we had a high in the 80’s. Last night it went down to 45. For us that is winter. Where is fall? I actually enjoy the cooler weather and look forward to having a fire in the fireplace.

One of the most difficult things about growing older is when you begin losing friends and contemporaries. Going to funerals is not much fun. The only blessing is that most of them have lived good, fruitful lives. You can be grateful for the time you have known them and the joy they have brought to life.

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I don’t mean to sound depressing. Most of the time growing older feels to be just another phase of life. It has some incredible joys and blessings. I have experienced so much and learned so much and writing has allowed me to continue to share. I try to appreciate each day. One of the hardest things is to learn to live fully each and every day. Time is not to be wasted but experienced. If only we could learn to let go of living in the past or the future and just be where we are at the moment.

Memories and emotions

Where families are involved life can treacherous. Sometimes the most innocent remark can be twisted into a major conflict. I suspect this is because there is history and much emotion involved. Often the negative reaction has nothing to do with what is going on at the moment. It is rooted somewhere in the past where the emotions are stuck.

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I have never forgotten that our emotions are tied to so many things. A piece of music from our past can have us experiencing the emotions we felt at the time. These past connections can emerge at the worst moments and skew our perception of the current experience.

Many of us have been taken straight back to our past feelings by a song, a scent, a person, or a scene. We don’t realize what is happening and our responses are not appropriate to the moment. This is doubly true for those we spent a lot of time with growing up. We are creations of our environment as well as our genes.

family breakup

It takes real strength to look inside and connect with the past so that we can disconnect ourselves from it. Most of us don’t want to relive the negative things that formed out emotional responses. It make take talking with a counselor to root out those emotions and at least understand them. Hopefully doing so will allow us to reconnect with those we have turned away from. Maybe not. Some we may not want to but there can be some that can heal connections that will change our hearts.