Thursday, May 31, 2012

Caregiving, Ever felt like that Hamster.

we've all been there,
many are there right now, takin a few precious minutes for a respite and I'm honored that you are finding here worthy of a moments rest.
The hamster on the wheel is proof in the pudding of those living these days, smushed between lives of caregiving, while running round and round and somehow losing themselves in the process of it all.
That running in circles
and in lives so busy,
even at times getting thrown off the mills/cycles/and round abouts
most folks, just get back up and in the thick of it again.
They forget that perhaps it is in those times of being thrown off or out or on the down
that is a perfect time to be still a minute or longer.
A time to enlist help,
to take an inventory of how you got where you are!
Maybe it is a time to find a new way of doing those things that have you feeling a lot like the hamster on the wheel or a squirrel in a tree
and a time to see if perhaps it is time for a well needed break!
Yet we hear and witness stories all the time of how life and situations threw us for a loop and ended us ass over teacups without notice,
yet we jumped back in there and proceeded right where we left off.
Ofen feeling smaller than how we started, yet the wheel goes on, the demands are larger, the routines get absorbed and a nother day goes by...

Time flies by and rather than counting the blessings we find ourselves counting the tasks yet to complete before we can lay down with all obligations as close to being met as possible.
What is that?
Who are they anymore?
Whose, mine?
Whose would that be?
Wasn't that the name of a game that used to be on television?
R e S p E c T?
oh yes, that was a song from back in the Day that Aretha what's her name sang wasn't it?

Another time perhaps what caregiver and person finding themselves in that thing called the
"Sandwich Generation" has time for such things?

Who would have thought that one would have to raise their kids, raise their kids kids and then some.
Who would have thought that the stress of caregiving while trying to make a living would forestall trying to make a life
and also involve caregiving for Elders and balancing lunch/dinner/cleaning/shopping and standing up for beliefs values and community.
Who ever thought that would not impact wellness, balance abilities of caregivers across our world in ways that are hard to understand yet beckon for friends and neighbors and the world at large to pay attention to?
Communities would do well to involve others to invite speakers, health care, funeral industries, pharmacies to support and encourage
seminars, gatherings where caregivers could hear and be validated!
Caring for the caregivers affects their daily lives; their ability to live their life with zest, with mindfulness with absolute joy.
Others don't know what they don't know, and caregivers are so absorbed in all that they face that they don't know what or who to ask for assistance!
It is well documented that caregivers are under tremendous stress, often have to be absent from their jobs, are suseptible to infections, to immune system failure, to Cancer, to stress related illnesses.
If you love someone who is a caregiver; be tolerant, be a good listener, and call them often.
Show up!
Don't ask how can I help you.
Instead, offer to take the kids to the mall or movies and give them a break!
Take a meal to them.
When you show up; be active,
ask where is the vacuum/the windex
and make yourself busy!
Offer to sit for them while they go and get a massage, or take a bubble bath.
Be a friend to a friend that is overwhelmed with action steps
offer or start a list for them.
If they are in the process of making end of life decisions and YOU are a good and trusted friend;
offer to go with them to a funeral home.
Let them know you are willing, that you do not want them to be vulnerable and alone in decision making.
Once anyone is like a hamster on a wheel it is difficult to get off!
Even if thrown off, the brain now has the message to get back on
repetitive behaviors are the message the brain is used to receiving.
We must work to give that magnificent brain the messages we want in order to get the results we demand.
Give the brain the command.
YOU are your most precious resource!
As Dr Seuss says,
"You have a brain in your head and feet in your shoes, only you can decide which path you will choose"
Caregivers have rights and responsibilities just as those they are providing care to.
It is a beautiful thing to care for another,
it is demanding and rewarding,
it takes much,
yet unless you care for you well you cannot provide care for another for the long haul.
Take best care of YOU.
It's time to fly the friendly skies to
Southwest Virginia!

Prayers and thoughts continue for
Thomas O'Brien now home from the hospital with his mom and beloved 4 legged Seamus,
we are with you Thomas and your beautiful mom Debbie.

Walk in Beauty,

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

The Sandwich Generation

Kam enjoying a sandwich bigger than he is, yet managing to sink his teeth in.
Oh how folks are having to sink their teeth into this thing called
"the Sanwich Generation"
now finding themselves
between two worlds
raising their own kids, balancing jobs, lifes that are on full throttle and loved ones at home who are ill or disabled.
The demands are great, the efforts are strong as they make their way in a world of constant caregiving
in ways unimagined.
working two jobs to provide,
taking lunch hours to run home in traffic to check on loved ones,
then back to the job.
Setting up a room with a cooler a sandwich and a phone nearby, and making sure that the T.V. is set just so, while maintaining your sanity
and also attending the school functions if you still have kids in school only then to get home in time to fix dinner, to check homework, to run here and there and to catch up and still maintain ones' balance if balance is still in your vocabulary and abilities.
Time for self?
It usually goes by the wayside along the way.
Nutrition, exercise, meditation, fun with friends of your own age,
remembering your own life and its sacredness, dancing with the tunes of the times and those days
of great and Motown sounds?
Somehow put on the back burner
as life gets in the way,
and memories dimmed
and friends grown weary of asking you to join them for an evening out, a meal, a time of gathering and listening to music or even a cocktail.

You have somehow become one of the millions now known as the
and it is not a baloney and cheese,
nor a good ole' mouth watering tomato sandwich!
More and more those in that squeezed between the generations folks find themselves unable to find resources for help; perhaps in rural areas, or busy streets and cities,
they are so busy they do not know who to turn to for support
they forget to ask.
Once upon a time, folks raised their kids, they cried about the
empty nest syndrome
then they celebrated freedoms
and enjoyed their own life
while seeing parents age and enjoy,
seeing kids grow up and fly
they then did their thing
But now?
Adults who had grand plans
are working forever
are now not just extending a hand,
but finding the extra bedroom is once again filling with either parents or grown kids or grandkids
that they are now raising,
extended families are on the rise
as economies dip
the fight or flight
makes folks return to the nest
and the squeeze and pressure
is on the boomers
to be all and more
while caring now for their own kids and grandkids
and their Elders
and somehow losing themselves in the middle.
This is a generation in need of reminders and support
There are times when out of love
one can bite off more than you can
reasonably chew.
Compassion Fatigue is tearing folks down, professinally and personally.
And with that comes illness, immune system break-down, joylessness, heartache, resistence to change and lack of hope.
Folks may forget to dance, to laugh, to embrace mindfulness.

Every time we forget how very important we are to the world
we forget our strength.
Those in this sandwich generation
are squeezed like orange juice without freshness overtime
that is tragic.
Within each person is a light, however dim it is there.
The pure essence of an individual is the ability to fan that flame into empowerment through support, care, compassion and the real deal of knowing;
before rendering aide to another you must first put your oxygen mask on.

1 of every 8 Americans is caring for an Elder and also a young person
and extended families are returning to the fold.
People must find a way to balance, to be mindful knowing that this is also "their live" right here right now.
You do not want to look back at some point in time and regret, or wonder,
"why was it never my time".

Remember friends,
YOU are fully loaded,

Walk in Beauty,

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Winds and grey skies

those rains are bringin it today!
A view from where I sit as I type
and little Gypsy is just havin a fine fit with letting those winds know how she feels about the NASCAR race round the pool getting rained out I might just tell you!
I sure hope that those hundreds of thousands of
Rolling Thunder has a safe and dry ride back to their homes
from Washington D.C.
yesterday and today.
Hope and eyes that have cried, voices that have been heard after mimutes of silence to honor and pay tribute to the fallen;
wreaths laid at the headstones
and flags now staying behind
in honoring, in remembering.
BBq's now over, gatherings too,
folks back to work, routines now getting re-established with memories safely tucked away and cherished to be pulled out at a later time.
Maybe the rains now are tears of gratitude that no one was forgotten once again;
reminders that hearts connected in grace and love remain connected though years pass.
Though different now,
somehow we go on, often stronger than ever before.
We stand for those who cannot,
Rolling Thunder rides to remember and for those no longer here to ride.
We sometimes must be a presence that is large,
we have to get in the face of others to be seen,
to stand for what is right, what will make an impact, what will be lasting as we remember and remind
others of strength, of freedom of right-way relations;
and sometimes what is not fair along the path.
We often must remind ourselves and others that life is a cruel lesson that no one promised us fair,
yet we are stronger when we stand
under our flag of unity
freedom is NOT free.
Yet we enjoy the comfort of our beds, our showers, our meals
while men, women, service animals are putting their lives on the line 24/7 to maintain our very freedoms
while now we have to hear all the crap that politicians are talking to get a ticket for 4 years in the big house, and those in congress draw a fat check with a lifetime of benefits that make most of us scratch our heads over.
Our Vets come home wounded, home with spirits, minds, bodies bruised, wounded beyond comprehension and we must stand for them.
Homeless and Veteran should never be in the same sentence.
We hear stories,
We now are subjected to political mud slinging of who did what to who; who can magically make it all disappear, and make it all better.
It didn't not get where it is in three years;
it will not get all better in 4.
Those who tell you otherwise, who campaign in your states, who fill your airwaves with such stuff are just after your votes.
Lies, deceit and such nonsense have been around a long time.
Treaties broken go back to the First Americans.
Check your history books if you doubt that.
We now have a man and those of power and greed and religion trying to take away women's rights and choices ?
We are living in a time where jobs, economy, children and education are at the front steps of America along with those fighting for our freedoms,
yet we are hearing of women and their health and very rights are being broadcast over issues worthy of debate/scorn/lawsuits and religion in our government?
It is long past time that men and women
and say this is beyond the pale.
We have men/women/service animals losing their lives fighting for our country
and yet we are now seeing women having to fight for the right (right) to control their very bodies and the hard choices that come along with it?
for your rights.

Remind those who are now in power that how they vote will in fact determine your vote;
let your voices be heard as you remember the fallen and those who serve to protect your freedom, and your rights as citizens of this great Nation.
If you do not like something, just don't do it
but do not take away the rights of others.
Have a blessed week friends,
I hope you had a magnificent week-end.

Walk in Beauty

We pulled a winner from the hat on last night
who won an autographed copy
Healing Heartaches!
She has a blog on wordpress
and I wait to hear from her in order to send it out!

Monday, May 28, 2012

Today is the Day! We've hit a milestone

WE did it!
We've hit a milestone
with followers
and this afternoon we will draw the winner for an autographed copy of
Healing Heartaches for a lucky winner!
Quick; you still have time>>> click the above link, and at the top of the page, hit that follow button! YOU still have a chance to get your name in the hat!

I am just tickled!
I'll be making an announcement later this evening or the winner!
I sure wish you all the best of LUCK!

Walk in Beauty,
keepin it real
share it with your friends, family and all who will listen!


We remember the fallen
Across the Nation
in small communities to the Nations Capital people are paying tribute
to those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice.
As Rolling Thunder slowly rolled by
This Marine saluted;
from the pages of Facebook I've watched as the photographs and the
"Thank yous" have filled the pages
from hundreds of thousands;
to also include those who have ever served our country, those who are now serving.
I've seen moving photographs, have shared them with others,
have read remarkable stories of those who have family members serving now.
Only a couple have chosen to post reminders that this holiday is one to honor only the fallen; to not be confused with Veterans day, to not be confused with any other day.
Not sure why the need was felt to separate those who wanted to add their thoughts for any who serve, but some folks are like that I guess.
I'm reminded when reading things like that though... Rolling Thunder rides for those who cannot... And we honor the fallen as many are alive and are fighting as we lay in soft beds, as we fire up our grills today, as we gather and remember and honor all.
I am reminded
that the fallen very well fell into the arms of a brother or sister or beside their service animal;
and that person is still alive and has lived through hell on earth as they now remember vividly the losses, the scents, the events
I remember and honor them this day as well.
I thank them TODAY for their service
as I remember them and pay tribute.
There are over 100,000 still missing and unaccounted for today;
probably alive somewhere,
there are POWS still out there
unaccounted for
and we want them home
I honor and pay tribute to that fact
along with those that are serving
I am remembering that saying
"we leave no one behind".
So yes,
I read the posts and am well aware of the definition of our holidays
Veterans Day
Memorial Day
and all the rest.
And yes, I am also well aware
that one Memorial day
we all will add our thank you's to those who paid the ultimate sacrifice
and yet
we would be shallow in our thank you
not to include the ones who arms held those who died on those fields and in beds as Elders
if we did not
pay tribute to those who have also served alongside them;
those who are serving
to protect our very lives and freedoms.
The losses of men, women, service animals
are far too great to not take the time
to remember
that so many occur in the arms of the angels
and also in the arms of those who serve
whether on the field or in tragic ways
here at home.
Yet, I can almost bet that they would want us to remember those who are now serving as we honor them today.
the hearts, the souls, the very spirit
of all in our Military today
take the time
to raise your glass as you move into your day
with great applause and thanks.

God bless those who have protected our great nation and their families.
2nd Lt. James Cathey USMC
and his beloved wife Katherine Cathey
being watched over by a Marine

Memorial Day 2012
With a grateful heart
as we remember
our men/women/service animals
and those still unaccounted for

Walk in Beauty,

you still have time:
the drawing for a free copy of
Healing Heartaches
will be made this afternoon!
Yes, we have hit the milestone
and will draw the winner this afternoon!
Go there and hit "follow" at the top of the page for a chance to WIN!
Good luck all!!!

Sunday, May 27, 2012

In The Arms of the Angels

We pay tribute and honor the fallen
Memorial Day Week-end
Here the rains were forcast at 40% and as I sit with coffee,
with plans to join dear friends for a day on the water, and memories of remembering along with times of laughter and relaxing and a fired up grill,
I sit and watch as the rains
fall with fierceness now!
That 40% giving us all
as a strong reminder
that some gave
for those freedoms we have
to sit and enjoy the rains
while others walk the
Tomb of the Unknown Soldier
24/7 365 days a year
in sun/rain/sleet/snow
honoring, protecting.
While others are sleeping on sand with a M-47 in their hands
and others are fighting with underwear changed every 4 months and havent had a steak in a year
protecting our freedoms
while we are firing up the grill
or making other plans
after waking and taking a shower
and fussing over the weather,
and somewhere someone is playing
protected by their brothers in Uniform by heavy weaponry on each side as they mourn losses on a hillside in hell on earth.
Oh the rains are really coming down now.
Thank you To all who serve
and those who gave all
for our freedoms.
{perhaps if it is raining where you are today, you can see it as a hiccup} or a gift!

"WArriors stand, and we STand UNITED"
Super moon challenge continues!
Prayers goin up!

Rolling Thunder, Carol, The 4 leggeds, Thomas O'Brien, Debbie Koenig, The Schram/Korabek family, Mark, Todd, Yvonne, Harry, Kevin, Jen, Charles, Kyle, Glenn, "the littleOne", Anne Klein, Monica Graff, Penny, Chris, Joy, Anne, Sara, DanLrene,
Jenn, Shirley, AnneMary, Michael, Jeannie, Tink, Patti Labelle and family,
Warren Buffet, Best of health be restored to you sir,
Kyle Jones in TN; a magic maker, a musician and a good man,
Miss America who took time out of her schedule to make a young man get his smile on while in the ICU, Thomas O'Brien sure did enjoy her visit, and was able to enjoy dinner out with her as well, new friendships made there indeed,

Dave Glenn Alley a talented musician who is extending himself in service to others, blessings to you friend,
Seth Greenberg and family, Eileen D. and family, Steve and family, Anne, A, Sandy, "EI", Kev, Chris,

Lyle Emerson and his family in Buffalo and little Kendra 3 years old who is fighting Lymphoblastic Leukemia,
Bernice Etsitty and the life of her son, gone too soon Garrett Joe,
Duke Limongello who was murdered 9 years ago; his mom Jean Limongello,
and all the children of all colors
gone tooo soon,
OUR President and his family
of our United States of America,
those who are serving our Nation and their service animals

and all who have served
and their families,
May the Creator bless you for holding us in your arms to protect our freedoms.
We will remember.
Sherry Reed, Mary Grace, Shirley, DLB, Dot/COB/Mom, Angela, Kamryn Elijah, D'Vante, Linda McDonald,
Joan & Olivia,
danLrene, CJ, Florence, Jenn, Bill, Denise, Ashe, Stuart Jr, Whitney, the Houston family,
the family of our disco queen Donna Summer as she now joins heavens musical greats;
Dianne, Ken, Andre, Bill, Taft Abras, Mary Labyaks' family , Andrea, Patti, OshKosh, Jamie, Sasha, Kerri, Josh, Kar, Cash, Neil, Lori, Cindi, Tom, Shasta, Bill Simpson and Family, Jenn, Steph, Dana, Kari, Sandy, Marty, Marsha, Wanda, Ellen, Cindee, Peggy, Joyce Cruz, a CANCER surivor working at Southwest Airlines *it was an honor to meet you dear one*,
Ike Davis, in New Mexico, an artisan who plays in the mud and creates beautiful tings out there, **
what a joy you are to so many of
SOUTHWEST, thank you for visiting with me,
prayers of continued success and tobacco to your Pueblo uncle!
and for
Christos Fandaros, Thomas Galvin,
John Knudson,

Curtis, Susie Langham, Stasia and Billy Hall, Christina Chavez and Rick and Ryan, Pam Meyer, Whitney, Diane Bystista, Susan, Leann Vincent, Roxanne Duran, Carole Poppendeck, Mary Jo H-shortes, Bridget, Robert Tanner Mara Tanner, Yolanda L Acosta, Antonio F. Balderrama, Denise Flowers, Lisa Balance, Sherry Stedman, Rose, Marquette, Acosta, Ortega, The Pueblo Peoples,
All those I was honored to spend time with in
"VA, DC, MD, FL, CT, PA, Ohio, Michigan, South Dakotas, Geisinger Medical Center, Michigan, Oklahoma, Ohio, Solaris Hospice, Evercare, Hospice of the Western Reserve, Gesinger, Crossroads Hospice, New Hope Hospice, Comfort Keepers KS, El Paso, Santa Fe, Albuquerque"
Jeremy, Florence, Cal, Sarch, our friends of Portugal, Mike, AnnMary,Stephanie, Jimmy, Keli, Kasi, Katherine, Julie, Allan, Lynda,LeeAnn,
KS Comfort Keepers, Stephen Bright, Linda and staff Melody,Brenda A and children Sarah, David Rachel; Gloria, Pete, Fred, Max, JJ, Barb and Leo Henning, Rick Fechner, Ryan Baurain, Melissa Reid, "Probation Professional pals", Jim Vander May (*who has been working in the Professional field for 45 years in Michigan*, Dale, Herschel, Bonnie, Louise, Holly, Jerry, Faith, Yvette, Happy, Audrey,
and Rod Markowski and family, Lynn, Ryan, Jordon, Darryl Markowski, I thank you for your service) Brian Markowski, Shannon Becker, Nick, Reagan, Dr Iris Taylor of Detroit Medical Center,, please take best care of you) Sandy R. Carol, Stephanie, Geri, Chris, Matt,
those in Oklahoma City, in Tulsa, In Ft Worth, Dallas, Ike, Isabel, Teresa, Janelle, Patricia, Susan, Karen, Laura in Yuba City CA,
Crossroads Hospice and those who care out there working and walking the walk, Perry, Clayton, George, Janet, and all in green!
Rick, Calley, Ron, Rebekeh, Brenda, Becca, Audrey, Gabe, Dena, BEth, Lill, Jay Hanson, Jennifer, Beth Jett, Huntsville AL, Sheri, Wendy Reese and family, Sandy, Toby, Edith Vaughn and family,Susan, Greg and Kyle Korabek (Landon Korabek on the other side now), Stephen Bright and family, Walter Littlemoon, Jane, Laura, Mitch, Jenn, Chris, Mary, Taft, Martha Deaver, Morris, Dahlee, Rose Brick, The Baitinger Family, The Yaslowitz Family, The St Petersbug PD, Congresswoman Gabbie and her family, Dahlee in NJ, Judy Kelley, beloved husband and family, Jennifer, (now being watched over by her beloved husband and child), Norma, EE, Little Cub to CJ and Angel eyes Jack, Daniel, Dave, Cindy and Steve, Marty, Sweet Pea and Pie Face, Florence, Jeremy, Dennis, Darrel, Greg, Leroy, Rebekka, Carly, John, Diana, Crystal, Karen, Janet, Callie, Lorie, Laura, Larry, Clive,
2 Wolves and Jinx in SD, (
Kelly and family,Judy W and her 4 sons up there in New England, Cherokee Wick, Benni, Gayle, Jonathan, Great Aunt Effie's family, Marilyn Warren, Ilene, Tweak and Chris, Jen and Bian, Ericka, Shannon, Hannah Sherabow, Pam C. and family, Susan S., Angela A., Nancy W, Sue G, Kelly and family,Mato Oyate Kola, Susan Brouse, Cindy and Stevie, Kim, Olatz, EVB, Guin, Yiva, Mary, Sandra and family, Christina Hellen, Dotti B., Susan and Greg, Amy, Becky and Barry Long, Christina, Matt and children, Aaron, Lisa and family, Freda, Linda Katie, Pat D, Tink and Mitch, LITTLE Ben, Jerry, Trish, Barb, Anastasia, Mary, Rylee, Lindsay, Ann, Sarah, Ruth, Johnny, Bobby and the Tucker Family, The Spraker Family,Kenny H, Michelle, Sandy, Addie and family in Canada, Sandy, BraveHeart, Rowena, Chris, Robyn Elizabeth, Jean, Duke,Rowena, Chris, Baby Robyn Elizabeth, Diane Smallze and family, Patti and family, The Korabek Family and friends, The Gasse Family and Friends,
Officer Crawford of St Petersburg, The Kocab Family, baby Lilly Nicole Kocab, The Curtis Family, Tarpon PD, those serving here and there in Uniform... Those now walking The Thin Blue Line, (far to many joining that line recently across our Nation),
Mylee, Mikey and family in DC, Jack M & Janis in OC, Stephen, Stuart Wittel (back from his 4th tour as a fighter pilot of the US MARINES inAfghanistan) and his parents Sandy and Stuart, Lavie Coltrane and family, Andrea Gasse and family here and in New England, Ali and family, Randy and Winnie in New Mexico, Jill Wheaton L, Dr Peter in NY, Dr Rev Bev, Irene M, Bernice, Eileen and family, Vicki, Matthew and family, Chris, Lovie, Nancy, Pedro and Our adopted family in BRAZIL, Our North American Black American Bears, The Windcross Convservacy and those beautiful Spanish Mustangs known as "pocket ponies"... the dolpins , always our most remarkable dolphins!!!
AND for:
Anne, Jim, JADE, Cynthia, Joseph, Cathy Madden, Nathan, and her family., Cindy in NC, Liz, Lee, Molly, Joanie, Jude, COFA, Judi, Ken, Matthew, Nick, Matt, Mark's family and many friends , Pat, Irene, Kevin, Dr D, Deb, Randy, Dr B, Isabelle, Kelsey, Sabrina , Charlie and family, Jean, Julie, Rhonda, Victoria, Mildred, Andi and family, Faith, Denise, Jim, Tom, Joey, Shelby friends and family, Judi, Phylis, Joyce, Gina, Tonya, Beverly and Family, Janeth, Melissa,Virginia, Stacey, Elizabeth, Nita, Gary Siegal, Adrienna, Brian Mawbey, the Boyan Family, Jean R and friend Christy Rider, Victoria and hubbie, Stephen, Gayle, Steph, Chris, Erica, Eileen, John, Mindy, Jack, Susan Werth Becken, her brother Mike and family, Craig James Lightfoot and his family, Kenny, Audrey, Ed Saner, Patty Crowley, Bennie, Gail, Jonathan, Moe, Beverly, Dennis, Peter, Trish, Cynthia, Heidi and her family, Kathy Knights family, Edith Vaughn, Candy, Cynthia, Jenn, Eve, Edith, Jason, Karen, Linda, Joyce, Belinda, Jeanette, Jennifer, Patti, Sandy S, and . ..
(Feel free to let me know if you would like to add your/or a frends name to our prayer bowl)
"when someone shows you who they are believe them" Maya Angelou
Walk in Beauty