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Reading the Touchstones of Happiness, 75 of them from various individuals reminds me of some of my own.

My morning cup of French Press coffee with Jesus.

The day my brother came to us, only a few days old as a foster child. And again, when our parents brought him back home from a hospital in Virginia where is biological mother had left him, then decided to let us adopt him. We got him back before his first birthday. Thinking of him makes me smile.

A sweatshirt he gave me which I wore until it was nearly in tatters. I was able to save the front of it and a friend made it into a small pillow cover. Now I can hug it lovingly, like I am hugging him.

Fresh flowers bring me joy, especially tulips, calilies, and daisies.

Books, books, books.

My Tiffany Bracelet from Becky. And remembering how I met her…at my Tiffany Reception hosted by the Regional VP of Tiffany’s for my newly published book.

Walks along a sandy beach at the ocean.

A fresh new legal pad of paper, a favorite pen…and the beginning of a new writing.

Or a clean white Word doc writing with the keys on my tablet as I sit in the Barnes and Noble Café.

Quality time with friends, face to face.

What are some of your touchstones of happiness?  Would love to read yours.

http://bellagracemagazine.com

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As I read this article in Bella Grace, I made a few notes for myself.

As Peter’s emotions brought on different seasons allow mine to do the same: dress for the season I want to be in, whether actual clothes or colors i.e. no black but spring colors when feeling it.

Create a Fairy Garden, on my porch or inside.

Settle in for Neverland inspired movies.

Step out of my color comfort zone and buy some Tiger Lilies and other colors of flowers.

Become a Fairy for a time by imagining being so tiny that I can contain only ONE emotion and FEEL it.  Write words that reflect that feeling, think of anything that is a part of those words/sensations etc.

Take myself to a Neverland – feel it, go there, be there, see it…

I love Bella Grace.  It encourages and inspires reflection within; and the journal pages gives me the place to write my thoughts.

Check out Bella Grace for yourself  http://bellagracemagazine.com/

Wishing everyone a Neverland of your own.

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A couple months ago I opened a current issue of Bella Grace, a magazine of inspiration and part journal.  Love this publication. It is only three years old, but it will be around for a very long time.  Wish I would have noticed it much sooner.  It inspires and encourages calm, peaceful, simpler living; and appreciation, respect, and love of others.

I also receive the blog Grace Notes, and today read an awesome post by Elle Harris “Love Letter to a Single Friend.”  It can be for someone who never found that special someONE, or did but lost them, even anyone to realize the importance of the gift of them to others who love them.  It is beautifully written and I hope you will take a few minutes to read it then pass it on to others in your life.

http://bellagracemagazine.com/blog/love-letter-to-a-single-friend/

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Dad ~ We Miss You

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Peace in the Garden by ann marquette

It has been 40 years this month since you left us.
John and I miss you. We can still see your face in our minds, and we keep you lovingly in our hearts.

It was sad when you were so sick for so long. I know you were in a coma the last several days of your time here on earth, and I’m sorry I was not there with you at the end. It was midnight in Ireland where I had been for three weeks with my company, when John called to say you were gone.

We knew your cancer wasn’t curable, but we hoped and prayed for a miracle. But God knew it was time for you to go home. We were happy for you to be at peace and pain free, but we do miss you.

Some months later I woke in the night and swore you stood at the foot of my bed. I had the sense you were trying to take me out of that place.
A couple years later I had a dream that was so real. You and I were talking, face to face, and it was wonderful. Then you began to disappear and left me. I woke sobbing.

You were a good Dad to us, and we are grateful for you in our lives, our hearts.

Love You Dad.

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Recently I was reading my devotionals and a key word kept coming up…HEART, and I began to think of broken hearts.

A Broken Heart is usually thought of regarding the emotion of love lost…either through a breakup or death. But what about a physically broken heart, one that cannot beat properly and needs a pacemaker, a defibrillator, or even a surgical bypass.

Over the years I’ve had many of the emotional kind.

Some years ago after being hospitalized for tests to check my heart after an anxiety episode the cardiologist informed me my heart was that of a 16 year old. So, this recent ambulance trip to the ER, even though I thought I was having a major anxiety attach, brought shocking news that my heart was in Afib (atrial fibrilation), and after being moved to the hospital’s other campus to its cardiology unit I was informed I would need a pacemaker. I now have a physically broken heart, and internal scars wrapped around the wires to the pacemaker all to keep my heart beating properly. After several years the little mechanical device will wear out and the doctor will have to replace it with a new one.

How do we heal the emotional broken heart! Time and prayer. God is the only one who can heal that brokenness, and He may do so in a variety of ways. But first He will help us to healing within ourselves. We do need to love ourselves before we can truly love others.

My big question is, where is our emotional heart. Surely those “heartfelt” feelings don’t actually come from the physical heart in our bodies. Where did the idea of the emotional heart come from. So I Googled the question.

https://www.heartmath.org/articles-of-the-heart/science-of-the-heart/making-emotions/ 
“McCraty explains that research has shown changes in heart-rhythm patterns clearly reflect when an individual is experiencing positive or negative emotions. For example, the research shows, sustained positive emotions are associated with a noticeably coherent, smooth and balanced heart-rhythm pattern. In contrast, negative emotions are reflected by a jagged, erratic pattern.”

Hmm! So, was my physical heart broken after too many sad and stressful times? Maybe. But, now I am in this place in my life and I must do what I can, with God’s help, to continue working on healing me, emotionally, mentally, physically and spiritually. I continue to be a work in progress 

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The great blessing during the first four days of April and after are the people who were and are there for me. As I lay in the first ER, before hearing the shocking news of being in afib I had texted my friend and neighbor Catherine, and a friend from church, Philomena. They both arrived quickly and almost the same time. What a comfort and help they were; and still a comfort by being my good friends.
During my stay in the Telemetry area of the other hospital several others came to see me. All offered to help in any way I needed. Thank you Paula, Ann, Ed and Carolyn, Tammy and David, Carole and Dan. My friend Judy came to spend time with me, especially the day of the procedure to connect the pacemaker to my heart’s electrical system! And she came the next morning to be with me until I was discharged, then drove me home making sure I was ok before she left.
My brother arrived from Michigan a few hours after I got home, and he stayed with me for two weeks. I wasn’t able to drive that first two weeks so he drove. As he was there over Easter we had a lovely Easter brunch at a nice local restaurant. I love him so much, and thank God for bringing him into my life.
I went back to work part time the week after I got home from hospital and the staff were awesome and caring. It did me good to get back, even part time to have my mind on something else. Between that and my brother being here with me those first two weeks I know it helped my recovery.
It is 3 months since and I am doing good. Feeling like a new person and in wonderment each day as I feel and think differently. Amazing how something that seems so bad can turn out to be so good.
Thank you God.

Heart Smile

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April 1st 2017 was the end of my life as I knew it, and the beginning of a new me. This was not God playing a April Fools joke on me!

It could have truly been the end of my life had I not called 911. I knew something was really wrong as I was having a second episode like I had on March 30th, which I, and the paramedics thought was a major anxiety/panic attach. This time I called 911 and said I might be having a heart attack. Very soon there were about 8 men and I think a woman in my apartment, from the fire department and EMT. They connected me to a machine (?EKG) and did a bunch of other things before putting me on a stretcher and taking me to the ER.

Once there I was connected to an IV and other machines, and a couple tests done. The doctor came in and told me I was in atrial fibrillation, he was going to call a cardiologist and see what he wanted done. The decision was made to get me to the Telemetry unit at the other campus of this hospital (St. Francis Bons Secour) where they have all the updated and appropriate machines for cardiac issues. Once there I was given meds and connected to more machines. A cardiologist came in to see me. He said I would most likely have to have a pacemaker, and yes be on special drugs the rest of my life!! It still hurts to say those words. The first 3 days all kinds of tests were done and apparently I was going in and out of afib. Another cardiologist saw me the next day also mentioning a pacemaker. On day 3 he confirmed I would have to have one! Totally shocking to suddenly hear I would have to have a mechanical device inserted into my body and be on special drugs the rest of my life. I told him right up front that I hate drugs and seriously dislike drug companies. My life, as I knew it, ended. Yet I was and am still alive. Trying to process this is still part of the beginning of this new journey.

More to follow Heart Smile

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