Anything is Possible!

With Love, Hope, and Perseverance


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SoCS: A Year of Challenge and Hope for Healing

Our Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “day/week/month/year.” Linda also invites us to write about the past year of pandemic, “how we have coped or not, to share our common experiences as a way to connect, to feel a little less alone.”

As a citizen of the United States, these past 12 months have been heavy, not just due to the pandemic, but also with the political divide and the racial injustice of the murders of George Floyd, Breaonna Taylor and others. It has been strange and confusing to have stay at home orders, masks and social distancing recommendations along with protests and demonstrations.

My hope is that with the pandemic calming down and someone less inflammatory at the helm, we can move into healing. It’s going to take a lot of work. A lot of compassion, listening, compromise, and seeking common ground… or higher ground.

I find myself feeling tired as I write this. There are bursts of energy when things get done, but maybe it’s a tired that comes with age. Still, my personal life has not been bad. I’m the oldest one in my family – my parents and siblings are deceased. Even Aunt Ruth in Wisconsin crossed over last year after a full life into her 90s. I am thankful not to have to worry about my parents anymore and feel for those who do. I am thankful to have the luxury of time and the freedom to study my father’s letters from Vietnam, and to write and paint.

Staying at home doesn’t bother me, except that I have not seen my granddaughter, son and daughter in law since October. I miss the mountains. It was in October that I last visited the mountains and first brought mama cat home from the church. She has kept me company when David is at his woodshop, and she has become much less feral.

Mama Cat has a plate of food.
She wants attention while I’m trying to write.

Having a cat has been a big change after being a dog person for so long. The pandemic and people not being at church much was one of two factors that led me to bringing her home. The other factor was the abduction of her daughter, Gray, in June. I still go to the church once per week to see if Gray has shone up, but I don’t think this is likely. I talk to Saint Francis and pray my hopes and thanksgivings.

St. Francis with last year’s hydrangeas

Not going to church and choir practice is probably the biggest change in my personal life. We do zoom church and I’ve sung and played a little guitar for that, because music is my favorite part of church. My voice is way out of shape when it comes to singing anything challenging. My friend Anne, who is in her 80s and teaches singing, is helping me with that. I’m thankful to have had both vaccines, in spite of the side effects, I’m glad to have a little more confidence if I do want to go out. I’ll still wear a mask and avoid crowds.

Hopefully we won’t have as much to protest or demonstrate for or against for a while. Maybe things will calm down and justice will grow. Maybe we humans will wake up, bridge the divides, and focus on healing Mother Earth as we celebrate diversity in all it’s beauty and strength.

Thank you to our host, Linda Hill for the consistency of SoCS through the year.

For SoCS rules and more streams, visit:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS March 13, 2021 | (lindaghill.com)


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SoCS: Nerves ~ Correlation is not Cause ~ Peace ~ Dreams ~ and the Wizard of Oz

The prompt: Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “nerve.” Use it any way you’d like. Have fun!

The first thing that popped into my head was the expression, “You’re about to get on my last nerve.” It isn’t exactly logical, but it’s fun to say. One thing that gets on my nerves, is when someone posts something that suggests a correlation is a cause, like the meme I just saw that had a photo of gas prices in November and gas prices in January with the heading/comment: “Biden’s America.”

To my credit, I did not try to engage in debate, but neither did I pass it by and ignore it, which is sometimes the best thing to do. Here’s my comment:

“In statistics class, we learned that correlation does not necessarily mean cause. There are likely other variables/factors to be considered.”

I do not need to engage in any further discussion that would irritate my nerves. This is why I try not to scroll on FB. I actually want to reduce my time on FB, but every now and then, these things come up. Then I was happy to be able to like and love some photos of her grand daughter.

I’m in training. Besides having a personal (exercise) trainer, I am in training to “practice peace that overpowers darkness.” I know that sounds somewhat presumptuous, but it is practice. I don’t always get it right, especially when things get on my nerves. This idea for peace training comes from the February 11 reading from the daily meditation book, Jesus Calling by Sarah Young. I certainly can’t do this practice on my own. But if I connect with the guidance and strength of Jesus and my Creator, I can do my part.

“Nerve” can be used in so many ways: nervous energy, nerves of steel, a bundle of nerves, “You’ve got a lot of nerve!” Then there’s the nerve cells I learned about in college with axons, dendrites, synapses, and all that fading knowledge that I don’t use much, though it could be helpful in cellular imagery for the purpose of meditative healings…..

Where was I going with this? There was something I didn’t want to forget. Oh, in college – The Psychology of Consciousness, all those years ago, was my favorite class. I do recall the dominant theory of dreams being that our sleeping dreams are created by random nerve cells firing while we sleep. But what part of us assigns meaning? And what meanings that mean something important? Though maybe sometimes, they are just random, like the stream of consciousness. But is it really random? There is also a not so dominant theory that when we have a deja vu, we are experiencing something we dreamed since we dream so much that we don’t remember. I mentioned this in my college class. The professor was not impressed. But hey, anything is possible.

The “cowardly lion” in the Wizard of Oz, didn’t believe he had much nerve. But he really did. Or at least he found it.

And Oz never did give nothing to the Tin Man that he didn’t already have.

I love this song and the mellow sound.

~~~

For more on the Saturday Stream of Consciousness,

visit out host, Linda Hill at:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS Feb. 20, 2021 | (lindaghill.com)


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SoCS: With all the Infinite Possibilities, Choose Wisely

Our prompt for #JusJoJan and Stream of Consciousness Saturday is: “sky’s the limit.” Write about something that has or seems to have no end. Enjoy!

Doesn’t everything have an end? Or maybe nothing has an end, it’s just transformed. There’s a law in physics that goes like, matter/energy can not be created or destroyed. That has stuck with me ever since I heard it in high school. This law suggests something about life after death. Our spirits have no end, in my belief, they may transform in the type of energy that goes on while our bodies decompose. Isn’t that cheerful?

Possibilities never end. Choices never end. There will always be choices for somebody, some being, even if the choices are made by amoebas or angels. Some organism or entity will exist in some form. But this is a bit esoteric. No, that’s not the word. But I do like how it sounds. Abstract maybe. Let’s move on.

“Infinite possibilities” is something that caught my attention in the following video offered by North Carolina representative Graig Meyer in responding to the attack on the capitol. I watched it Friday morning and was impressed by his sense of hope in how to respond to the craziness. I suppose if I watched it again to comment further, that would cross the line on minimum planning. If you’re interested in the question of how to respond and healing, you could visit my post from yesterday as well.

One of the main things I’m feeling right now is frustration at people who reinforce the divide. I have to look at myself though and notice if I ever do this. The goal is to bridge the divide. Don’t pour fuel on the fire. Put water on the fire. Water seems to have no end when you’re standing at the edge of the ocean, but you know what? Water is finite. Use it wisely. We need to use our words wisely. With all the infinite possibilities of word combinations, we need words of hope, peace, and cooperation.

PS. Okay, I went back and watched the video again after I finished writing this post, and I recognize he’s addressing North Carolina democrats directly. If you’re not a NC Dem, I hope you can overlook that part and glean something good from his message. I don’t think we need to get everybody to agree, we need to learn to disagree with respect, compromise, and find common ground.

For more streams of consciousness, rules and possibilities, visit our host, Linda Hill at:

The Friday Reminder for #SoCS & #JusJoJan 2021 Daily Prompt – Jan. 9th | (lindaghill.com)


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Good News Tuesday for Nov. 3, 2020: Chile Votes for Constitution Rewrite, Nuclear Weapons Ban, A Drop in Crime, and a KKK Leader’s Change of Heart

Seeking Balance One Tuesday at a Time

It’s a good day to take care of yourself. Get outside, do some exercise, consume nourishing food, drink water, pray for peace, watch a funny movie, and remember, good news happens!

Citizens of Chile Vote For a Constitution Rewrite

After a month of protests against inequality, “Right-wing President Piñera” agreed last November to hold a referendum on rewriting the outdated and “divisive” constitution. Due to the coronavirus, the referendum was delayed until October. BBC News reports An overwhelming majority of 79% … voted in favour of the new constitution.”

UN Ratifies Treaty Banning Nuclear Weapons for Affirming Nations

On the 75th birthday of the United Nations, Honduras became the 50th nation needed to ratify The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons which makes the creation, sale, maintenance, and use of nuclear weapons illegal for nations that have signed the treaty. This article from the Good News Network includes a moving account from 88 year old Setsuko Thurlow, one of the last survivors of the bombing of Hiroshima.

Crime Drops Significantly in the Philippines During COVID Quarantine.

In the Philippines, from March 17 to October 2, cases of robbery and theft decreased by 60 percent, and serious crimes, including murder, homicide, physical injury, rape, robbery, and theft, were reduced by 46 percent Read more from The Good News Network.

Former KKK Leader Works for Peace and Compassion

Army veteran Christopher Buckley is a former KKK leader who now volunteers with Parents 4 Peace helping others open their minds and hearts with empathy and kindness. You can read more about his journey here and watch the video:

Got good news?

Please share in the comments!


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My Debate Speech on Confederate Statues

In Saturday’s stream of consciousness, I mentioned my participation in a local Braver Angels zoom debate. Below is my three minute speech opposed to the following debate “resolution”:

“Removing statues and monuments will erase important parts of our nation’s history.”

I was one of three people speaking the “con” side of the statement. We had fewer speaking in favor of the statement. One interesting point made by an African American woman disagreeing with the statement was that relocating statues to museums would likely give more opportunity for learning and discussion by visiting school groups, etc. She also talked about subliminal messages and healing.

Braver Angels seeks to depolarize America with workshops and debates intended to foster respect and understanding. We are encouraged to say what we believe and to speak from our own experience. After each prepared speech, people can ask questions of the speaker and responses can be up to one minute. If there’s time, we have “flash speeches” and share what we learned.

This first debate by our local group went well. There was concern from some that if we start removing statues, that other statues and monuments, like the Lincoln Memorial, could also be removed. My question to this was to ask if the speaker thought some statues could be more harmful than others, and that seemed to be a point of agreement. All statues are not the same.

Now, for my speech. (Respectful responses from your own experience and feelings are welcome. )

Hello, thank you for the opportunity to speak this evening

If we remove a statue or monument, we are not erasing history. We cannot change what has already happened. History will still be available…in books, films, and on the internet. Many statues and monuments can be re-located to museums where a much of history is saved, or to private historical sites, cemeteries, or to the families of the artists who created aolstatues.

When I first read the debate resolution, I thought of the confederate statues I’ve seen in downtown Wilmington.

I’ve lived in Wilmington since 1980. All that time, I’ve felt very uncomfortable with the confederate statues glorifying men who fought for slavery. One of the things that bothers me most is the prominence of the statues. If you live anywhere near downtown, you’ve seen these statues on a regular basis. What kind of message do they send?

One example is the prominent 8-foot-tall statue of George Davis recently removed from Market Street. George Davis was the last attorney general of the confederacy.  The pedestal describes George Davis with glowing words like “stainless integrity, virtue, refinement, and the true heart of chivalry in southern manhood. Is this an accurate portrayal of history?  It leaves out the fact that George Davis gave a “… public speech1861 in which he argued that North Carolina should secede from the United States …. to protect (in his words) the economic interest in “chattel slavery.” Chattel slavery in which human beings are bought and sold as property.

I am deeply troubled that this man has been celebrated and honored as a hero for so many years.

When I’ve passed by this statue, and the one on third street honoring the soldiers of the confederacy, my feelings of discomfort and embarrassment linger. I want to cringe at what they represent…..

 I can only imagine what black and brown citizens think and feel when they’ve passed these statues. 

We need to ask ourselves, what people and ideals do we want to honor? Do we want to promote the ideals of the confederacy? Do we want to honor men who fought for slavery and the oppression of a whole race of human beings?

Or do we want to promote values of equality, equity, community, and inclusivity?  ……

The statues representing confederate soldiers and statesmen have stood for many years in prominent positions in our city. But times are changing.

 Maya Angelou wrote: “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.”

It’s time now for our city to move forward, and to honor positive and inclusive ideals.

Thank you for listening.


15 Comments

Mayors Call for “Peace, Not Patience” (2020.May.31)

One of my favorite Gandhi quotes from Doggedly Yours:

Doggedly Yours

A nation braces for another night of unrest.

Demonstrations Resume as Mayors Call for ‘Peace, Not Patience’ (New York Times 20/05/31)

IMG_5047 copy_1500x900

Some will draft letters to the government, others will create signs for protest demonstrations, I may do so tomorrow though today on this day of pain …

….I elect to write a post to this blog.

“When I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love have always won. There have been tyrants and murderers, and for a time, they can seem invincible, but in the end, they always fall. Think of it–always.”

― Mahatma Gandhi

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One-Liner Wednesday: Calling for Peace, Not Quiet

 

“There’s a difference between those calling for peace and those calling for quiet.”

___The Rev. Al Sharpton in a Eulogy for George Floyd

 

When brutal racism has taken black lives, we cannot be quiet, and peace may be hard to find. But we can be non-violent.

 

2019 1linerWeds badge

 

One-Liner Wednesday is brought to us by Linda G. Hill. for more one liners, visit:

https://lindaghill.com/2020/06/10/one-liner-wednesday-june-10th-2020-moooommm/


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What Flames are You Fanning?

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Today’s SoCS prompt is: “fan.” Use it by itself or find a word that starts or ends with it. Use it any way you’d like. Enjoy!

 

Fan the flames of peace.

Sing out to bring the dove.

The road might not be straight.

Let me start with my own heart.

 

Fan the flames of justice.

Not with violence, but with strength.

Be persistent.

We can’t always wait for Karma.

 

Fan the flames of love.

Speak your heart’s desire.

Love your neighbor as yourself.

Remember we all belong.

 

What do we want to speak into existence? Our thoughts and our words are powerful! Focusing on what we want, not what we don’t want, brings our heart’s desire. Yet, there are times when we must vent to release and make room for something better. Just don’t linger in the darkness. Don’t let the negativity become toxic.

Imagine the best. 

That’s the fifth step in my new book, From Loneliness to Love, Five Steps for Finding a Healthy Relationship. The e-book will be available on Amazon tomorrow! (June 7) I’m still trying to get the cover right for the paperback. It looks good digitally, but the printed proofs….. Oh well.

I will imagine that this book will help people. The principles work not just for finding a healthy relationship, but for many other goals.  Here are the steps:

  1. Clarify Your Heart’s Desire
  2. Request Help from the Divine
  3. Love Yourself Well
  4. Focus on Friendship
  5. Imagine the Best

 

On another note:

Fan blades remind me of flower petals. So I’ve recycled ? upcycled a couple.

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Painted with alcohol ink and soon to be a sunflower

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This one spins in the wind.

 

For more Streams of Consciousness, visit our host, Linda G. Hill at

https://lindaghill.com/2020/06/05/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-june-6-2020/

Here are the rules:

1. Your post must be stream of consciousness writing, meaning no editing (typos can be fixed), and minimal planning on what you’re going to write.

2. Your post can be as long or as short as you want it to be. One sentence – one thousand words. Fact, fiction, poetry – it doesn’t matter. Just let the words carry you along until you’re ready to stop.

3. I will post the prompt here on my blog every Friday, along with a reminder for you to join in. The prompt will be one random thing, but it will not be a subject. For instance, I will not say “Write about dogs”; the prompt will be more like, “Make your first sentence a question,” “Begin with the word ‘The,’” or will simply be a single word to get you started.

4. Ping back! It’s important, so that I and other people can come and read your post! For example, in your post you can write “This post is part of SoCS:” and then copy and paste the URL found in your address bar at the top of this post into yours.  Your link will show up in my comments for everyone to see. The most recent pingbacks will be found at the top. NOTE: Pingbacks only work from WordPress sites. If you’re self-hosted or are participating from another host, such as Blogger, please leave a link to your post in the comments below.

5. Read at least one other person’s blog who has linked back their post. Even better, read all of them! If you’re the first person to link back, you can check back later or go to the previous week by following my category, “Stream of Consciousness Saturday,” which you’ll find below the “Like” button on my post.

6. Copy and paste the rules (if you’d like to) in your post. The more people who join in, the more new bloggers you’ll meet and the bigger your community will get!

7. As a suggestion, tag your post “SoCS” and/or “#SoCS” for more exposure and more views.

8. Have fun!

 


16 Comments

Spay, Splay, or Spray Your Way to the Peace Train

72530873-4C03-4E67-80E2-39270B3FC76F

Today’s prompt for  Stream of Consciousness Saturday:

“…spay/splay/spray.” Use one, use two, use ’em all, it’s up to you. Have fun!

There’s so much I could write about, but I’ll start with the prompt.

Spay or neuter your pet. There are so many homeless dogs and cats, so many killed because they were abandoned….   I’m feeling tense right now and sad because of the news in the US, and now, thinking of abandoned pets being killed in shelters…. I don’t want this to be a downer post, but that’s where the stream of consciousness is going for me right now. Consciousness sometimes means being sad or angry or afraid because of what’s happening….

Going back to spaying and neutering, there aren’t enough homes for them all, so I don’t understand why people would find it acceptable to breed more dogs and cats when you can adopt from a shelter and save a life. If we get another dog, when we get another dog, I’ll be looking for a shepherd mix from a shelter. But who knows who will find me.

Doodle, our Treeing Walker Coonhound, may she rest in peace, was adopted from a shelter or rescue by my husband before we got married. Her big walker feet would splay out when she got excited. It was involuntary. I wish I had a picture of her feet splaying. Here she is sleeping on our bed with her big feet.

Doodle hiding on bed

 

Spray. The first thing I thought about with that was pepper spray. I’ve been watching news on the protests in Minneapolis over the murder of George Floyd. When I watched the video of the police officer kneeling on George’s neck for several minutes even after he became unresponsive, I was yelling, “get off him! Just put him in the car!” (He was already handcuffed!) But when I was watching the video George was already dead. Bystanders were yelling for the policeman to, “check his pulse!” and “He’s unresponsive!” Afterward, I cried. I don’t wish I hadn’t watched the video. It was important to see it. So many black men (and women) have been killed by police officers or “vigilantes.” This one was the worst I’ve seen. But they’re all horrible.

I’m usually optimistic, and I still have hope that we can do better. Sometimes things have a way of getting worse before they get better. I believe this is enough. My heart is heavy.

I know there are plenty of (?) some good cops in the world and in the US. I know at least one personally. There must be more. Police suicide in the US is very high. Some big changes need to happen. Police officers and cadets need a lot more training in de-escalation and community relations.  That’s an understatement. They need routine screening and supportive counseling.

Here’s my hope and vision for the future of my country where violence and injustice are concerned:

The US stays involved in the United Nations. We have a Department of Peace that gets just as much funding and status as the military. We have offices of peace and peace workers in every city and town that get just as much funding as law enforcement agencies. We organize for peace. We seek it diligently. We nurture peace and each other. It will not be easy. But it is possible.

I haven’t been smiling lately, but here’s some medicine:

Oh, yeah, my husband David just made a peace chair protoype. I’m going to paint some color on it. Painting is my medicine, too.

Peace chair unpainted

Peace Chair from Reclaimed Wood

For more on SoCS visit Linda’s blog:

https://lindaghill.com/2020/05/29/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-may-30-2020/

Here are the rules:

1. Your post must be stream of consciousness writing, meaning no editing (typos can be fixed), and minimal planning on what you’re going to write.

2. Your post can be as long or as short as you want it to be. One sentence – one thousand words. Fact, fiction, poetry – it doesn’t matter. Just let the words carry you along until you’re ready to stop.

3. I will post the prompt here on my blog every Friday, along with a reminder for you to join in. The prompt will be one random thing, but it will not be a subject. For instance, I will not say “Write about dogs”; the prompt will be more like, “Make your first sentence a question,” “Begin with the word ‘The,’” or will simply be a single word to get you started.

4. Ping back! It’s important, so that I and other people can come and read your post! For example, in your post you can write “This post is part of SoCS:” and then copy and paste the URL found in your address bar at the top of this post into yours.  Your link will show up in my comments for everyone to see. The most recent pingbacks will be found at the top. NOTE: Pingbacks only work from WordPress sites. If you’re self-hosted or are participating from another host, such as Blogger, please leave a link to your post in the comments below.

5. Read at least one other person’s blog who has linked back their post. Even better, read all of them! If you’re the first person to link back, you can check back later or go to the previous week by following my category, “Stream of Consciousness Saturday,” which you’ll find below the “Like” button on my post.

6. Copy and paste the rules (if you’d like to) in your post. The more people who join in, the more new bloggers you’ll meet and the bigger your community will get!

7. As a suggestion, tag your post “SoCS” and/or “#SoCS” for more exposure and more views.

8. Have fun!


15 Comments

#WATWB: Veterinarian Cares for Homeless People’s Pets for Free

We Are The World Blogfest in white

For the past nine years, Dr. Kwane Stewart has been visiting homeless shelters, soup kitchens, and walking the streets and alleyways of California to take care of homeless pets for free. He and his vet tech, Genesis, do this work in their spare time. They understand that pets are family.  Dr. Stewart has a gofundme page for help with supplies, medication, and pet food.

You can read more about the the street vet in the following story from from the Good News Network:

https://www.goodnewsnetwork.org/veterinarian-treats-homeless-peoples-pets-for-free/

Paw print from pixabay

This post is part of the We Are the World Blogfest, a monthly blogging event created by Damyanti Biswas and Belinda Witzenhausen to showcase stories of hope and light.

This month’s co-hosts are:

https://www.professorowlsbookcorner.wordpress.com/“Sylvia McGrath
https://drkillpatient01.wordpress.com/“Peter Nena
http://shilpaagarg.com/“>Shilpa Garg
https://ericlahti.wordpress.com/“Eric Lahti
https://bwitzenhausen.wordpress.com/”Belinda Witzenhausen.

Please visit WATWB Facebook Pagefor more stories of light and hope!