Archive for October, 2009


TC350!

Firstly, Happy birthday (Oct 25th) to Stacia, my mother-in-law. ¬†ūüôā¬†

 According to 350.org:

On 24 October 2009, people in 181 countries came together for the most widespread day of environmental action in the planet’s history. At over 5200 events around the world, people gathered to call for strong action and bold leadership on the climate crisis.

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Oh Mackinac!

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I watched the waves pour through the chain-link divide separating (at least superficially) Lake Michigan from Lake Huron.   Suspended high above me, the roar of traffic and the wind in the cables could not distract me from that blue, blue water.  How it glowed and sparked at each peak!   I let myself get lost for a moment in the depth and breadth of it; immersed in the thrill of seeing the shore drop below unseen.  

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Rise Above It

There was a point during my treatments, as I sat waiting for blood-work and Dr. Kohler, I noticed something that changed my outlook about having cancer. An elderly man opened the door for his wife, who had clearly been undergoing treatments. He supported her as she walked through the door and they slowly shuffled by. But I had already grown accustomed to something you don’t ordinarily experience in waiting rooms or in public: The woman turned to me and our eyes met and our gaze did not falter for worry or insecurity, but rather pushed through some unseen barrier and wrapped right around my heart.

“Why, you’re too young,” she said. And her husband’s kind eyes joined hers and we shared this moment where, having just met, we had known each other all along. An odd familiarity, a connection that supersedes politics, race, age, sex, religion, and just exists in the moment.

During radiation treatments, I met a man who was so weak, he couldn’t lift his head. The thrush he had developed in his mouth made it difficult for him to speak and yet, when his chair was parked beside me, he made it a point to look over and smile. I reached over and held his hand. We just remained there, present in the moment; not letting the outcome of either illness consume us; we shared in something no cancer could kill.

There were so many people; many who have passed on, who showed me surviving cancer isn’t about surviving an illness, it’s about rising above it. In that sense, we all won. We all beat it.

Now I look for those people whose eyes reveal something deeper; some connection to this underlying knowledge; some sense of what it means to love someone, to share in something larger than ourselves – to rise above it. As Lauren’s mom would say, “They get it.” And they make life worth anything illness or the unexpected can throw our way.

Friends, my husband, Erick, the programmer, has branched out into Nerdcore Hip-hop for a song-fight sponsored by the *infamous* Nerdcore founder, MC Frontalot. Please show your support for this hard-working fellow with a vote that says he rocks you to your nerdy core! Scroll down to the song by etweb (or MC 2Plus)…

Vote Today!!!

Forgive!

I’ve been thinking about forgiveness all morning. ¬† Forgiveness as a process that must unfold in order for the heart and mind to move forward in good health. ¬†It’s not easy – we don’t always feel the other person ‘deserves’ forgiveness;¬†after-all¬†we look at it as a gift. ¬†But the gift is one that is shared – a relief from the threat of anger – a defense against being consumed by that anger. ¬†We give forgiveness, but we also receive it in the same action. ¬†And it allows us to move forward freely, without the constant need for rethinking our anger and shelving it higher and higher with no resolve. ¬†

So then, when we are so afraid of forgiving someone; perhaps we should ask ourselves whether we are afraid to forgive ourselves. ¬†What is it that stops us short of freeing someone from the ¬†confines¬†of our¬†hostility? ¬† While at the same time reserving some civility for ourselves? ¬†I’ve met people who are so close to forgiving, but hold on to that anger tightly because it is familiar and protects them ultimately from rejection. ¬†I’ve been one of these people. ¬†Too stubborn to let go and let my¬†defenses¬†down long enough to forgive; and to be forgiven. ¬†And my failure to do so has haunted me for some time. ¬†

So now, I focus on the letting go and allow myself to be vulnerable once more; forgiving myself for the mistakes, for the anger I reserved and built up around every reflective surface so I would never have to look too far inward.  And I can say it has helped me.  Because as willing as I am now to love others unconditionally, I so am willing to love myself.  

Bestow the gift.