A Blessing From A Tragedy

 

tragedies

I have been friends with her for over twenty years now.  Our friendship began with tragedy.  Her young child of seven or eight then, abruptly fell down while playing with his friends.  He had a coronary incident and died on the spot.

I heard about this news and my soul was filled with grief for her heartache.  I had a son about the same age as hers, and the thought of the magnitude of her loss was deep in my heart.  I hugged my children a little tighter that night.

We worked together and she was a nursing assistant.  I was the nurse on her shift.  We got along well.  But it was the loss of her child that drew me to her, and bonded our friendship.

She is the one who gave me my Devotional Bible that I use everyday.  Her heart is pure and she loves with all that she is.  There isn’t a mean streak in her, and she doesn’t hold grudges or wrongs.

And I am the one who is lucky and fortunate to know her.  It is those rare friendships that need to be guarded.  Life’s tragedy solidified a friendship.

God’s twists have allowed me to have a loving friendship in which I can be there for her, and to hear her voice when I’m having my own issues is truly a gift.  Her courage has amazed me.  I continue to learn from her humble and generous spirit.

Lifting Others Up And Myself Too

 

Dont just be good

I’m a wife and I provide a comfortable home with dinners made in the evening, and the bed made, and a clean environment.  I am a friend to my husband and listen to his concerns and help to be a caregiver.  I am his other half, his loving companion, and enjoy being his wife.

I am a mother and a Mimi, and I am there for the concerns of my children and grandchildren.  I will always be there to provide comfort and guidance.  I am there as a friend and a listener.  I will always care for and give hope when it is needed.  I will show my faith and forever be their protectors.

I am a friend who can be trusted, and will try to do my best to be an advocate and supporter of hopes and dreams.  I will listen to concerns and joys, and be with my friends during good and at turbulent times.  I am there for times of need and pain.  And I will rejoice in the accomplishments.

I am a warrior, and a fighter of mental health equality.  I have strength that others know nothing about.  I have fought my own demons, and I have conquered hallucinations, delusions, and paranoia.  And I have fought through fear for years upon years.  I am strong and I am a fighter.  I believe that the mind deserves the same attention as physical illness and health.

And I am me.  I am unique.  I have compassion and am trustworthy.  I love with my whole heart and will fight for those that I love.  I need to replenish my spirit when time allows, or make the time to do that.  Making time for me is essential to who I am, and to how I can be of service to others.  Recharging my own spirit gives me balance.

 

Difficulties Wont Distract Me

 

God knows what he is doing

So I spent the last two hours working on a new menu for my blog site.  It came out perfect (or to my liking).  I titled the menu “For a Higher Purpose”.  I had numerous previous menus and I want to show God’s work in my life in my writing, so I felt that the title was appropriate.  I then pressed the button to publish it without first saving it, and it was GONE!  Two hours of work gone so quickly.  I was shocked.  What had I done.  I thought about restarting my efforts, and then got up, ate, got dressed – all while contemplating what to do now.

In a moment’s time I found myself thinking about my morning prayers and the peacefulness of the day as I worked on my project.  My reading from the Bible today was about the peacefulness of God.  Then I could hear the familiar known ways of Satan in past bible studies and church, that the more you work toward getting to know God, the more distractions and set-backs are put in your way.  Satan doesn’t want God’s love to be spread around.  He wants failure and negative thinking.  He wants fear and chaos.  Though in the midst of thinking about my lost efforts, I thought about the title of my menu again – For a Higher Purpose.  And the ramifications of spreading the love of God could be detrimental to the chaos.  And to stay above that, the peace of God ran through me.  I found myself smiling through the frustration.  No I wont let myself be distracted.

The same rings true for everything that is going on in my life.  Life can be complicating and confusing and filled with fear and chaos, but it is with the knowledge that I know that God is in control that I can go forward confidently.  The distractions are trials and fear can be overcome.  I am placing my trust and faith in God and I know that everything will work out for the best.  All will be okay.

Visualize What You Want

Being creative and having a good time while I’m doing it is amazing.  So why not make a vision board of the desires of my heart.  I did this once in a partial hospitalization program while I was recovering from a depressive episode.  It was not only fun (once I started it), it helped me to focus my energy for my future.  So I thought about it and had an array of old magazines that I had recently went through and decided “why not”.  I got these magazines together one night and started to flip through the pages.  My initial goal was to find words or phrases that contributed to different areas of my life – my home, my blogging, my family, my health, my vacation or summer fun time.  As I went through the pages, more and more inspiration and thoughts came out of it, and I cut those words and phrases out.  Then I found pictures to go with my words.  It became a game of what more could I find.  I wanted more goals and fun to add to my collage.  My mind drifted to the way I wanted to run my house, camping in the summer, spending time with my family, being healthy and active, believing that Emerging Triumphant in personal areas of life are going to be attained, peacefulness, joy, laughing, and venturing out, plus much more.  I cut out all of the pieces.  Why not have an art project with my desires and ambitions?

Art Project

Vision Board

I remember once being asked by someone to take a picture with one of my funny faces depicted for the photo, and I displayed this “no way” kind of attitude.  And my daughter who was thirty-one at the time simply asked me, “how old are you”?  She was really saying “don’t be so old”.  So in essence I say, be young and have fun and have goals and desires.  Truly putting this vision board together and putting it in an area where I will frequently see it actually focuses my mind to my future hearts desires.  And what I think of frequently so will it be.  Try it.  It works!

Adult Coloring to Peacefulness

Not Everyone Is For Your Best Interests

Michelle obama

Working for this family doctor’s practice was what I thought that would be the perfect job, especially with my anxiety and bipolar disorder.  It would be more peaceful and comforting to my spirit.  That would have been so if I wasn’t taking the job of a beloved Registered Nurse who had worked there for twenty years and had recently passed away.  I was this younger nurse that was trying to take her place.

“What does she know.  She cannot be any type of replacement for…”

I had to fill the shoes of a loving and caring triage nurse that frankly (could not be replaced).  The competition and comparison were greater than I could handle.  My anxiety moved in which also allowed my depression to rise and spiral out of control.

One day I had left a message for my psychiatrist to call me so that I could ask him to possibly raise my anxiety medication.  Well, he called me back and I huddled into the break room.  The physician of the practice happened to come into the room as I was finishing my conversation with my psychiatrist.  Instead of any form of compassion and understanding, he  immediately told me that what he heard about my mental illness was not within doctor/patient confidentiality, so he felt that he had the right to let other people know.  I was not only suffering with my own problems, but now I had to worry about him spreading my medical and emotional information throughout the practice.  It was within a few days of that conversation that my anxiety blew up into full-blown panic and I was unable to return to work again.

I tried so hard but ultimately this “peaceful, comforting atmosphere” was the ending of my nursing career.  My anxiety and bipolar were too much of a burden for me.  And the fear of being “called out on it” caused great distress.  I never allowed my mental health conditions to affect my work and judgement.  I was masterful at hiding my emotions, which was part of the issue.  Keeping everything held in for so long would end up causing me to have periods of great emotional release and uncontrolled crying and distress.  And to think that I had to “hide” my mental health condition was absurd.

So although this physician was supposed to reflect compassion and caring along with an attitude of good healthful advise and concern (I would think).  I believe that his attitude toward mental health or (stigma) caused unnecessary reaction on his part.  Instead of advocating for a healthy aspect and environment in the workplace, I was threatened with my own “medical” problems.  Kind of ironic if you think about it.  Because actually mental and physical health are all medical in nature.

 

Control your Atmosphere / Music / Home
Voice Activated
Echo (2nd Generation) with improved sound, powered by Dolby, and a new design – Charcoal Fabric

Hope For The Best

 

Courage dear heart

Though times are scary and everything seems to be falling apart, there is a plan for it all.  We don’t understand the reasons that the paths are going into shaded areas.  We are walking blindly into unknown areas.  There are kind hearts and spirits all around.  There are prayers and hopes for the future.  The anxiety sometimes overwhelms and yet we move forward.  Take in all that is wonderful and all that we can be grateful for,  because there is so much love around us to be seen.  Take each moment for what it is, enjoy and be in the present moment of time.  Don’t think too far ahead.  The mind has a way of twisting information.  Stay in the present always, and hope for the best.  It is all in God’s hands and He is our strength and our provider.  We are safe in His care.

Being Thankful for Every Blessing

 

Gratitude

 

How could I possibly think that I’m living the dream.  Well, I have a beautiful home.  I have a husband that loves and cares for me.  I have grown children that I love with all my heart.  They are all caring, compassionate adults, they have done well for themselves, and they love me for who I am.  I have neighbors that are wonderful and caring.  I now have the time that I am able to spend with my children, and I’m able to help them as needed.  I have two beautiful granddaughters, that are sweet and loving.  We are not rich, but we get by and are comfortable.  We travel occasionally, and now we have a great RV.  We have a warm home, a yard that we have our garden in, and a field for snow-shoeing in the winter.  We have a dog that is loyal and smart.  And cats, well, they love being loved.  Life is as good as I make it.  And I say it is quite good.  So, yes, this is the dream.

 

Being Grateful During Trials

Be Strong with Gratitude

Having my daughter diagnosed with stage two breast cancer when she was thirty-one and helping to care for her during the pain, anxiety, and illness due to chemotherapy all while living about one hour away from her is exhausting.  She has a seven-year old child that needs to feel security during these times and not be overwhelmed with the chaos (behind the scenes).  We also have the daunting task of traveling close to two hours one way from my daughter’s house for her treatments, and these are tiring days.  And as a mother and former Registered Nurse, I am aware of the personal care and the help that is needed after these treatments.  I want to be there to help her during these times emotionally and physically, while also helping her with her care and daily chores, and spiritually, offering love and hope.

I also have my own illness with Bipolar, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, and PTSD that I have to manage on a daily basis, and keep myself healthy so that I am able to do all that I want to do, in order to care for her while keeping my own affairs in order.  I am fortunate that I have a supportive husband and support team that I can count on when I need them, though reaching out when I am having trouble is essential.  Part of my support team is my psychiatrist who is compassionate and knowledgable and my counselor who I trust completely and am honest with and lean on when times are hard.  She has become a valued part of my team and I am so blessed to have found her.  And though mental illness is a battle to manage at times.  I have a greater understanding of those that suffer from anxiety not only in mental illness, but also with others who suffer from the fear and disruption due to a physical illness.

It’s amazing how life brings us down different paths and that the journey is so unpredictable.  Having to give up practicing as a nurse was a devastating blow to me.  I knew that I was meant to be a caregiver and I was knowledgable at my skill.  I love to help people and bring them comfort and joy.  So leaving my profession due to a disability of mental illness was crushing.  I admitted in despair one day to my mother that what I worked for was all a waste.  She adamantly told me that I would always use the skills that I have learned and to never think that anything in the past is ever a waste.  I have come to understand that statement well.  I not only cared for my mother and father, I also advocate care for my husband and myself, and now for my daughter.

Get The Beautiful Look
Roxy Bay Lodge Cross-Body Bag, Camel

Also, being divorced from my children’s father was a devastating end to a long relationship that I fought to maintain, but ultimately we parted.  I can see the blessings in regard to that separation as well.  We both are better people apart from one another.  I now have a partner and husband that I truly believe is my soul mate.  We were meant for our paths to cross, and he lifts me in a way no man ever has.  And though our paths are extremely different, our hearts are similar.  It’s a nice feeling.  During these trials he is my main support, and it is when we are at odds that I truly have to reach out to others in my support team.  My husband is my rock.

So although life though it twists and turns, and is currently difficult and draining at times, it worked out exactly as planned.  There is meaning in everything.  There is a reason for everything and having trust and faith is essential.  It will all make sense eventually.  Focusing on the positive aspects of everyday and what I am thankful for is my goal.  Moving forward with determination and strength in all that I do and looking for the beauty and the things to be grateful for is what keeps me going.

We Can Do This Together

Being a mother is more than a responsibility.  It is a lifelong loving gift and privilege that God has given to us.  It is the ability to be there for a child through the best of the best of times (when there are trophies, and graduations, new babies being born, triumphs that are overcome and beautiful memories that are made), and it is also being there in the midst of the chaos and the uncertainty (when times are scary, and worrisome threats are all around).  It is being there when the child falls and you help them up, and also being there when those bumps and bruises are beyond the parents control, and believing and praying, and encouraging is needed.  This privilege that God has entrusted to us as mothers, goes beyond all that is seen with the human eye, it is filled with determination, and love, and faith that is not tangible but is instead filled within the spirit.

child

And to my children, I will forever be a part of all of those times of joy and trial.  I will be here to lift you and help you whenever you have fears or doubts.  Call on me when you need a friend.  I will be your best friend.  I will fight the battles with you, and stand by your side.  YOU are my priority.  YOU are my love.  YOU are a part of my heart that I will guard with all that I am.  We, together, can make it through anything.  I promise that I will always do everything in my ability to make things better, and safer, and more hopeful.  Never be afraid to lean on me.  For in the end of the trial will be a beautiful rainbow and promise of a brand new day with sunshine. Just hold onto my hand.  Mom will always be beside you.