Welcome Home

Framed letters home sweet home hung on a wallRecently I returned from Virginia to visit my newly married son and his wife. I was riding high with good feels from seeing the kids thriving in their new surroundings. For two days I had dinner around their table, visited their workplaces and church, and explored with them the places they enjoy on the weekends. It was tough, but I tried to not be clingy at the airport as I said goodbye.

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An Invitation to See Miracles

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“We can see a thousand miracles around us every day. What is more supernatural than an egg yolk turning into a chicken?” This quote by S. Parkes Cadman, American clergyman and newspaper writer, reminds me of how when my children were little they saw the world, full of surprises and abundant with miracles.

I would crack open eggs week after week and only think of how I needed to get breakfast made and the kids out the door to school on time. They say mystery, the hand of God, and often reminded me to stop and look at the stars or to notice how the full moon lit up the yard, or they could get me to laugh when I had been in a bad mood all day –now that was really a miracle. Continue reading

Don’t Go It Alone

Burdened-Endearing-1People who need help sometimes look like people who don’t need help.
Author Glennon Doyle Melton

My day job is working with family caregivers in support groups, a place where they have the freedom to share what’s on their mind and visit with and learn from others who are walking the same path they are on.

I often meet caregivers who are trying to wear so many hats in their families while caring for a loved one with a chronic or terminal illness. They put on a brave face and grip tightly to the ship’s wheel while weighted down by duty, tired and already in the midst of the grieving process that comes early to caregivers as they let go of what they dreamed life would look like for them and their spouse. Often, they can’t see to navigate the ship for their loved one let alone take care of their own health and well-being. Sometimes the simple question: “Is there someone who can help you?” leaves them dumbfounded. Many don’t realize they have the right to ask for help from friends or family members. They often believe they are in it all alone. Continue reading

Radical Gratitude

About a decade or so ago I started keeping a gratitude journal after author Sarah Ban Breathnach introduced many of us to the concept of listing on paper the day’s blessings. This was a way to hold focus eggplanton the goodness in our lives–the things that bring a sense of relevance and peace.

This practice is one that is helping to guide me through the murky waters of grief since losing my husband. As the shock wore off, I loosely set a goal to write at least one thing at the end of the day and I’m certain it is one of the buoys that has kept me afloat. It has been the reminder to look for something, anything, that is positive, that feeds me, that keeps my mind from getting stuck in the pain and fear that comes with losing a love. Some of the notes in the early weeks following his death were as simple as: I’m grateful for potato soup, the beautiful vegetables at the farmers market, work to do. Continue reading