Changes – It’s Still All About Acceptance and Self Love


“Evening Song” www.sfago.com

I always recoil when anyone says, “at your age ….”, “It’s expected at your age…” or a diagnosis of “age-related”. to which I respond, “OK, but what would be causing this if I were young?” And then I have been able to find a satisfactory solution, usually on my own. Until recently.

I have reached a time in my life that is bringing perhaps an inkling of changes that are probably pretty close and maybe even here now, if I choose to acknowledge them.

I have a paint buddy that I met in 2014. We were immediately best friends and we’ve rarely done plein air painting or travel relative to paint workshops or paint outs, art shows, gallery trips without each other. I’ve grown close to her and consider her one of of my two best (nonfamily) friends. She is several years younger than me, I’m in my 80s and she in her 70s. She is still traveling internationally and has a higher level of energy.

I don’t want to hold her back from doing painting events, because I’m unable, knowing we can modify what and where we do some things together. She’s a lesson in loyalty and I realized yesterday that I need to make her feel comfortable with looking for a new paint buddy but first I have to work through my own feelings about this and at this moment I’m having a difficult time facing that. I’ll miss the very special times and making memories, our painting relationship, experiences and the closeness that goes with creating memories and just the fun of painting with her in situations that are highly unlikely to happen again. I imagine dynamics will change, proximity, time together will probably change and will our wonderful friendship change? I expect it to continue to be meaningful in other ways. We have a lot of fun memories.

Choosing is sometimes a little easier than being forced to let go so am trying to use that perspective to face the end of an era, a change caused by some new limitations in my life, and probably not in the too-distant-future, hers as well. Painting is my passion and still consumes my thoughts and time but in my studio now.

I’d like to, in fact, plan to travel to paint again and need to find my own comfort level. I have now and have always had an abhorrence, even an inability of feel that I’m being a burden to anyone. Now I’m faced with needing to deal with that and find a way to accept that it’s ok to ask for help or, with forewarning to my buddy, friends and family, of my less energetic self. I know that it could sometimes hold someone else back and concerned that I would make them uncomfortable and impatient. I have to remind myself that these are more likely my feelings – not theirs. Yikes! Admitting that I’m not the person I want to be or used to be? That I’ve become less? Again I have to remind myself that I’m more than my energy level. I have the same issue no matter when, where or who – I’ve always pushed through as much as possible but can no longer stretch myself. When I’ve hit the wall, I’m done and it’s often inconvenient to me and have a difficult time involving others in that.

I’ve been isolating, partly because much of the time I don’t have the wherewithal to leave my home, but also waiting for a time when I would be able to keep up comfortably. I finally realize that I’m going to have to admit to myself and others the possibility, in fact reality, that I have a new pace. I’m hoping – and quite sure they’ll understand, and that they also have a choice and can opt out of anything, no harm, no foul. Giving that “out” to them is easy for me to do and accept. I also need to accept the possibility that I may have to opt out last minute – and that’s difficult for me to accept ! No harm, no foul for me? Yikes!

Is slowing down such a bad thing? I suppose not. I still walk briskly and have a pretty sharp mind. It’s subtle changes in desires, actions and staying power. Maybe that is part of aging? Maybe not? I have a feeling that I’ve been in denial and those close to me already get and accept it. After all, I do have a head of white hair and that is hopefully associated with wisdom, discrimination and maturity – and slowing down. I think I need to concentrate on that description of my changes. I have loving family and friends around me who are eager to be together. That’s all that really matters. So what am I concerned about? Nothing serious going on here! Isn’t part of life just acceptance of constant changes?

Other changes in my life that were monumental and real life-changers at the time are now, as part of my past, remembered mostly with very little, if any, emotion. This change has been more insidious, occurring rather slowly and somehow immense and accepted with more resistance; I think because I am equating it to moving toward the end of life as I know it and that I love so much. But other changes were really no different? Yes! Because now I’m closer to the end of my life. Period! And I love my life! But I’ve milked it and am still having a wonderful time and I’m past my expiration date.

So just another change – really nothing new. Only what I decide to attach to it. Perspectives?

Self love, acceptance. Remember, Sharon! Self love, acceptance. And then Joy and Gratefulness!

Carpe diem!

And Namaste,

Welcome!


Morning Glory

Hi Everyone!

I still occasionally get notes and requests for the Chopra meditation transcriptions, in fact today I got one and although they still will not allow me to do that, I’ve found new doors that are open and generously appreciate all of us sharing their works.

When I read todays note from a subscriber, I suddenly feel excited about writing again, and staying in touch with you all. It will probably be more of a journaling, but if anything is useful to you – Hooray! I welcome conversation, in fact that’s what I’m hoping for, to get other perspectives and dialogue about navigating through our lives. I’ll keep remarks public so that all who wish to participate can. I think it could be very interesting and enlightening.

The subscriber ask about how I’m doing since my son transitioned with glioblastoma in December of 2015. My life changed forever and I’m discovering more about life, physical and nonphysical, and have gradually arrived at a more peaceful and joyful place.

I had early and very supportive help, especially from Father Tom at a nearby Episcopal Church. I had only attended the Church a very few times after discovering it on Christmas Eve in 2014, invited by a good friend and retired Catholic Priest who was also a more recently retired Lutheran minister. Hilary is husband of one of my best friends and although I rarely attended church services in more recent years, somehow was drawn to this particular Episcopal, very friendly church after that Christmas Eve Candle Light Service.

My father was a minister with the First Church of God and I grew up with quite restrictive religoius guidelines, both because of beliefs and maybe a little more intense being a preacher’s kid. I had a lot of fear of God and not feeling the love and acceptance that was the other side of that – my conclusions of what I was hearing and seeing as a child.

Skipping to my journey since Rich transitioned, I discovered Abraham – Esther Hicks on YouTube. The love and acceptance of myself and others intrigue me as I listen. For many years, I had heard about meditation, mainly through Oprah and one of my sisters, and the benefits, but I could never reach what I heard others talk about – quieting my mind and disconnecting from my physical self. I’ve always had a strong inner guidance and “knowing” gut that I’ve relied on and since listening to Abraham, am learning to trust and rely even more confidently on my Inner Guidance, my Source guidance.

I’m still learning and practicing the meditation but am gradually finding it more centering and aligning, resulting in experiencing a sense of well-being more often. I’m thrilled with that! Sometimes it’s just a matter of lying still and connecting deeply with the many wonderful things that I appreciate and love in my life – my two remaining children, my grandchildren, great grandchildren, sisters and other family at the top of the list. And then there is my art, my good health and mobility, a living situation that is peaceful and beautiful, interesting and loyal friends, music, good reads….I have a long long list.

I want to offer a free link to “Ask and It is Given” by Esther and Jerry Hicks, the free full audiobook available on YouTube. Esther and Jerry are generous and offer thousands of topics free on YouTube about any subject I can think of. We are all free to share these as we wish.

Another free meditation series on YouTube that I often enjoy is by Rising Higher. This is one of my favorites, Gratitude Affirmations but there are several that I rotate.

Namaste

First Visit to OHSU 11/3/15


Rich has been here a week now.  Things have fallen into place.  Divine guidance!

We got his insurance changed to Oregon from Nevada with about two hours to spare.  I was so grateful to reach our insurance agent on a Saturday afternoon late, and she was kind enough to come to our home – from southwest Portland to Northwest Vancouver, during one of the rainiest evenings I’ve witness in the Pacific Northwest.  Streets and freeways were flooded.  It was a mess.  Grateful! Grateful! Grateful!

We learned by accident about 1/2 hour before I reached her, that if it wasn’t faxed to the company by the last day of the month, it wouldn’t start until the first the next month.  His visits at OHSU would not have been covered and these were urgents visits because of the aggressive tumor.  Grateful! Grateful! Grateful!

My naturopath referred us to another ND who specializes in Oncology.  She was compassionate and managed to make our appointment  in less than a week!!  She also has called and advised us about diet and her protocol by phone prior to our visit.  And she referred us to a nutritionist in Texas whose specialty is treating brain cancer with surprising results.  Grateful again.  We are so blessed!

Today we are emotionally raw and exhausted again after a long trip through the normal traffic mess in Portland to OHSU.  We didn’t really care – just wanted to get some kind of contact started.

We were met by a radiologist who showed us the images.  I can’t even explain the emotions of seeing this lesion on my son’s brain.  I was nauseous.  He was breathless.  We all had our questions answered to the best of their information.  We found that the brain biopsy done in Las Vegas was very inferior and didn’t provide information needed to start treatment.  We learned about in depth examinations and inferior and simple examinations that are useless for a definitive diagnosis and initiating treatment.  So we wait…

OHSU is still waiting the arrival of actual tissue to do their own lab studies.  If it is inadequate in any way, Rich will need to go through another brain biopsy.   Beyond words, the look on his face…

He is so brave.  He had a few moments of anger that turned into gratefulness very quickly.  The doctors clearly are top rate – know their business, listened to us, were open and supportive of our decisions.

We are very hopeful for the very best in treatment, for a good outcome for Rich.

My “I’m Grateful For…” Journal


Years ago Oprah invited me – well, all of us  – to make a list of three things that we are grateful for.  I did it.  I had done it before but not on a consistent basis and almost never when I most needed to do it – when it was the most difficult to do.  Now I rarely miss a day.  When I am quiet for my bedtime meditation, I go over the positive things that happened that day.

It has become a habit.   Some days it takes the same effort as praying and thanking God for my situation – no matter what my circumstances.  Even when I’m angry, even when I’m crying, even when I’m feeling there is nothing to be thankful for.  But I always find something.    It’s an exercise in discipline but it does change my attitude.

And it has changed my life.