Anything is Possible!

With Love, Hope, and Perseverance


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Drawn to Water

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…its haunting melodies often spark the remembrance of a vague “water” memory, perhaps a nebulous recollection of my wet beginning that lingers somewhere in memory’s oldest and deepest recesses.

                                                               Natalie Scarberry, Sacred Touches

The euphoric effect of swimming or floating in water has often made me wonder about that “vague water memory.” I always miss being weightless in that element when winter comes. But living in the present of summer, I realize how gloriously addictive swimming can be.

When weather permits, I swim in the ocean. Her waves dance with me and caress my skin. Every now and then, she can get a little rough in her play, just to show me who’s boss, and I laugh at her and myself when she puts me in my place. I have to respect her power.

Sometimes I swim with a friend who has a pool at her apartment complex. We talk to catch up for the first thirty minutes or so, and then we get more into moving in the water. With each laid back breast stroke, I watch the soft ripples billow out before me. I glide through cool liquid that washes away every worry. I am free.

You’d think with my love for water, I’d be a water sign. But I was born in mid December, so my sign is Sagittarius, a fire sign. I can only guess that water keeps the fire from overwhelming me. Water soothes my soul. No wonder blue is my favorite color. Except when my favorite color is green.

I missed the pool and the ocean last week as I’ve been dealing with a rare head cold and heeding my body’s message to rest. I’m drinking as much water as I can, and I am ready to be well.

Water heals us,

Cleanses us.

We are made mostly of water.

Our continents are joined by water.

Let healing waters flow

Through our bodies

Reviving our spirits.

Blue Blue

 

(I’m posting a little earlier than usual this week, because I’ve got some busy days ahead.  Have a great week, everyone!)


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Healing River

New River via VA State Parks

New River State Park, Virginia

 

About 15 years ago, I was on my way to work and decided the pain in my chest was definitely worse than my usual acid reflux. So, instead of going to work, I drove to the urgent care place. (You don’t mess around with chest pain.) It was a couple weeks after my husband left. We’d been married for twenty years and I thought we would grow old together. My romantic heart was broken. After some tests, the PA on duty told me my actual heart was okay (medically). It was just acid reflux and stress causing my chest pain. In spite of medication, I had heartburn almost every day for the next year. I learned to live with it.

About a year or so after the urgent care visit, a friend asked me if I wanted to go camping near Galax, Virginia with her and her son. We took separate cars because she would not be staying as long. I followed in my car with my son, my daughter, and our golden retriever, Jesse. The drive took several hours with at least one hour crawling by at 25 miles per hour because of the road work. My friend made a sign with lipstick and had her son hold it up in the rear-view mirror to encourage us:

IT  WILL  BE  WORTH  IT !

The campsite was down the hill from a big, white house belonging to a friend of my friend. It wasn’t summer yet, so we had the area mostly to ourselves. I loved seeing  Jesse run off-leash through the field next to the river bank. The sparkling water was chilly, so he didn’t swim much, but he drank from the clear river whenever he felt thirsty. That first night, after watching the stars come out, I went to bed and listened to the song of the water dancing  over the rocks. I slept better than I had in a long time. The next day, I realized my acid reflux was gone! I had no heart burn the whole time we camped at the river.

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I took this at our campsite near Galax, Va.

My acid reflux has returned from time to time, but ever since we camped at the river, it has been mild and infrequent – a signal my body gives me to let me know I’m too stressed and need to take time to relax.

 


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Connections

spider web from pixabay

“This we know. The earth does not belong to us, we belong to earth.

This we know. All things are connected like the blood which unites one family,

All things are connected.

Whatever befalls the earth befalls the sons and daughters of earth.

We did not weave the web of life, We are merely a strand in it.

Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves…”


This poem, attributed to Chief Seattle, has been on my mind lately. Maybe it’s because of the senseless deaths in Paris and in other parts of our world. Maybe it’s because the holiday of Thanksgiving always makes me think of the generosity and betrayal of the Native Americans. When I researched Chief Seattle, I discovered there is some suspicion as to whether these were his words. But some one wrote these words, and admired Chief Seattle enough to attribute them to him. It is an important message.

 

spider in late afternoon light

This spider web remained surprisingly intact in my yard after heavy rains and strong winds. Something about the connected structure of the web made it strong.

Did you know that spider silk is five times as strong as steel?

 

Planting Trees

Makes the web stronger

Reducing waste

Makes the web stronger

Kind words

Make the web stronger.

Spread your arms out

Open your hands wide

Feel the healing energy from your source

As it flows to your soul

Connect to Life and all that is good.

Send love out into the world.

 

 

(The top photo is from pixabay. The bottom one is my photo of my pet spider.)

 


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A Mother’s Vision

Heart above fairy face

I imagine you wise

A good mother

When the time is right

Comfortable in your own skin

Learning to laugh at yourself

It took me a lot of years to learn that

Why should I expect you

To learn it sooner?

My daughter

Your wisdom emerges

from the depths

Of your healing soul.

You will be

The mother of love

comfortable and comforting

Your sweet laughter

Lighting up the night sky.

 

Taking my own advice on positive thinking, I wrote this for my daughter who is 22 and searching for her own path.


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Will She Forgive Us?

“I leave behind even my walking stick. My knife is in my pocket, but that I have forgot. I bring no car, no cell phone, no computer, no camera, no CD player, no fax, no TV, not even a book. I go into the woods. I sit on a log provided at no cost. It is the earth I’ve come to, the earth itself, sadly abused by the stupidity only humans are capable of but, as ever, itself. Free. A bargain! Get it while it lasts.”          

                                                                                                     Wendell Berry

Sunset at Sander's Point

We have been cruel to our Mother

Not all of us,

But as a species

We spoil her precious gifts

We plunder her riches.

Will we outgrow our childish disrespect

Before we destroy her?

Will she be able to forgive us?

Mother nature is huge and diverse,

Like the human race.

Will we learn to live in peace?

Or will we destroy our home

And ourselves,

Leaving earth to rats and roaches?

The possibilities abound.

Some of her wounds are so deep,

I fear despair will overtake me.

But  some work to save her.

Some wounds are healing.

Parts of her remain intact and glorious.

She has a great capacity for healing.

If enough of us work for that healing,

Our Mother may Forgive us.

Tree on Boone Hillside

This post was inspired by Harlon at A Patient Voice:

http://apatientvoice.com/2015/08/05/the-eco-system/


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Healing is a Process. All Body Parts Welcome!

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Healing is a favorite topic of mine. There are so many things I could write about it. My father’s mysteriously overlooked back fracture is healing as is his spirit. I am healing, impatiently, from whatever virus caught up with me last week….

I could use both words in the prompt, heal and heel, by writing about healing my heel pain. I’ll run with that for a while.  Plantar fasciitis has been one of those chronic conditions that surfaces now and then as I  get older. My body has gotten better at giving me signals to slow down, rest more, or eat less when my pants get to tight, or in this case to get arch support.

Being such a nature “girl,” I used to love to go barefoot as much as possible. But can’t do that anymore. To prevent the plantar fascia in my foot from becoming inflamed, I have to at least wear flip flops. The pain has been in one heel or the other, thankfully not both at the same time, and flares up every few months or every couple of years. It heals when I  keep lots of support under the arch of my foot, even though the pain seems to come from the heel.

As I’ve gotten older, there are a few more of these annoying aches and pains, and it seems to take a little longer to heal, and then healing has always been a process for me.

Years ago, while in the unhealthy divorce rebound relationship, I took a course in Reiki, to see if I could heal a mysterious female ailment going on in my lady parts. Sounds mysterious doesn’t it?  Does vulvodynia mean anything to anybody? It has nothing to do with cars. It can be extremely uncomfortable and unnerving. I’m going out on a limb here, but maybe it will help somebody. You never know what’s going to come out with SoC.  Anyway, I used Reiki, along with changes in diet, but what helped most obviously was:

1. Getting out of the stressful relationship, and

2. Physical Therapy specifically designed for women

I’m not going into much detail about how the PT worked, but it has to do with the vaginal resting tension being too high. Biofeedback, along with  kegels and muscle relaxation, helped me learn how to let go of that extra tension.

I don’t believe I’m typing this.

But people need to know this stuff! Somebody was just telling me about a relative being incontinent and she had only heard of kegels for the purpose of tightening the vagina after giving birth. People need to know that kegels can also help prevent problems like incontinence by strengthening pelvic floor muscles.

Is this just a female problem? Do men have pelvic floor muscles? Could men benefit from kegels?

I just looked up whether I was spelling kegels right and found this:

http://www.webmd.com/urinary-incontinence-oab/kegel-exercises-treating-male-urinary-incontinence

So, kegels are good for men too! Who knew?

Getting back to healing, though we never really left, my ailments get better, but sometimes it’s a slow process. In the case of vulvodynia, I was holding tension in that particular part of my body, because my body knew instinctively that the relationship was bad for me. My body was trying to tell me, and finally, I listened.

Disclaimers:

1. This post is NOT meant to provide any form of medical advice.

2. This post is NOT meant to promote Web MD.

3. This post was NOT intended to include the word, vagina. It’s a Stream of Consciousness thing. I only planned to write about healing heels.

So here’s a link about plantar fasciitis from Wikipedia:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plantar_fasciitis

This week’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday Post was the word heal/heel. If you’d like to join in the fun, visit:

http://lindaghill.com/2015/01/16/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-january-1715/

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. There will be a prompt every week. I will post the prompt here on my blog on 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,” or “Begin with the word ‘The’.”

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.

5. Read at least one other person’s blog who has linked back their post. Even better, read everyone’s! 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 right 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. Have fun!


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Prayer, Support and Healing

red tealight

We got a phone call, last Thursday night, that my two year old grandson, 700 miles away, was in the hospital with a bad case of pneumonia. A little while later I found out he had been helicoptered to a university hospital and was on a ventilator.
It was the night before our parish retreat at Trinity Center, where my husband and I would have leadership roles in morning and evening prayer services. Part of me wanted to get on a plane and fly to where my grandson was. Maybe I could help with something. But instead I prayed and tried to have faith that God had this covered. I asked for prayers on Facebook, something I don’t do often, especially for myself or some one in my family. Why is it easier for me to ask for prayers for some one outside of my family, or total strangers even? Maybe it’s the scary part of feeling vulnerable when I ask for prayers for myself or some one close to me.

The little guy was on my mind all day Friday. I’d called my Dad, the most powerful prayer warrior I know, to join the team. At times I was able to push away my fears and visualize my grandson healthy and strong, running and playing outside with a smile on his face.  That felt like the right thing to do.

Late Friday afternoon, at Trinity Center, my husband, David,  asked me to follow him. I figured he wanted to show me something. He took me to the little chapel where tea light candles rested in a bowl of sand, waiting.  Together, we lit a candle for my grandson, and David read from the Episcopal Book of Common Prayer: A Prayer for Healing. I was moved that he thought of this. After dinner, at the Compline service, I asked my church family to pray with me. I prayed for my grandson’s healing, for wisdom for his doctors and nurses, and for comfort to his parents. I was worried, but something told me God was working on this.

On Saturday morning, we got up at dawn to watch the sun rise over the ocean, but the sky was overcast, so we couldn’t see the sun. Instead we watched pelicans dive for their breakfast. After our breakfast in the dining hall, we had Morning Prayer, discussion and meditation time. Then, I went back to our room to get an update on my grandson. His doctor had decided to use a scope to take a look into his collapsed right lung. They found an obstruction  that could not be removed with the scope, so surgery was needed. The obstruction turned out to be a kidney bean.

Kidney beans on a shelf

Use with caution!

 

Who knew kidney beans could cause that kind of trouble?

 

 

 

 

That night, during Evening Prayer, I was filled with gratitude as we sang “Amazing Grace” accompanied by simple guitar chords and the sweet rain dancing outside.

After the kidney bean was removed, my grandson’s condition began to improve right away. His right lung started to work, and he came off the ventilator. He was discharged from the hospital on Sunday. His mom said he was so ready to go, he almost ran out the door.

What a relief to know he was okay! But it was not a total surprise. I’d felt the fear, but there was much more hope. Being at Trinity Center, surrounded by nature, with my husband and members of our church family, was a big comfort. I realized how important it is to have good support and to have a relationship with a loving, caring power greater than ourselves.

Thank you, God!

For a look at Trinity Center, where we held our parish retreat:

http://joannesilvia.wordpress.com/2014/09/23/trinity-weekend-relax-restore-and-revitalize-with-nature/


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Peace for Missouri, Peace for the World

LennonWallImagine, by Adam Zivner

Lennon Wall Imagine by Adam Zivner

Peace is Possible. We need to look for it.

I don’t watch or listen to the news much because most of what’s covered and served up to us is  negative and so toxic.  But I couldn’t help hear and see and feel the news about what’s happening in Missouri. Yesterday, a report on public radio got my attention about the Highway Patrol being placed in charge of the investigation of the death of Michael Brown, the teenager who was fatally shot by a police officer in Ferguson.

After nights of tear gas, rubber bullets and police in riot gear, it gives me hope to see images of Captain Ron Johnson (and the police chief) marching with citizens in peaceful protest in the video from the USA Today article below.

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/08/14/ferguson-missouri-police-clashes-shooting-anonymous/14046707/

I don’t know how often law enforcement people march with protestors, but it’s certainly a step in the right direction. As we mourn the loss of Michael Brown, I hope that we can all learn from our mistakes and that, going forward, those in authority realize that showing a position of fear fed dominance and control generally makes things worse.

What can we each do as individuals to move in a direction of peace?

I pray for the family of Michael Brown.

I pray for healing and peace in my homeland.

I pray for healing and peace for our planet.