Moments

Thank you for the prayers and positive thoughts – they really help to get me through chemo and then rebound into life again. Thank you for the difference you make in my life.

My life lately consists of driving the kids here and there, driving to the grocery store, and driving to the occasional outing. It can feel routine.

But then, there are moments. Like:

  • Walking down the street on a beautiful summer evening, suddenly realizing that I can hear our neighbor (an acclaimed classical pianist) playing piano through her open window.
  • Noticing the unexpected. For example: I sent Anne a thank you note on this stationery:

Thank you card beach stationery And she sent it back to me.

At first I was simply puzzled and amused that she would do that. Then I saw that she included a photo of her own, along with the note: “This photo is of my favorite place on earth!”

Beach "favorite place on earth"

(The original was more in focus, but notice the beach umbrellas and the blue and white striped chairs.)

  • Driving home from church with my mom and talking about Jill’s surprise birthday party at the Red Sox game (which occurred well over a year ago) when I hear a honk from the car behind me. I look, and someone is waving – it is Jill. She even got out of the car at the next traffic light to say hello!

These are fabulous in the moment, but then…each time I replay them in my heart, I can get the same joy, wonder, laughter and amazement.

Thank you for creating so many of these moments, for me and for others. I hope you are feeling the ones in your life that make you laugh out loud, smile inside, love bigger and pause in wonder.

Love,
Marie

 

 

Shifting my focus

Week one passed so quickly.

During the prayer service this morning, a woman brought her guitar upfront to play and sing. None of us was familiar with the songs so we couldn’t sing along.

Last year, I LOVED the prayer service and was uplifted by the chance to belt out fun songs in a big group with guitar music. It bothered me that I couldn’t sing along. Her “performance” was cutting into my joyful song.

Throughout this trip, I have been trying not to compare it to my trip last year. I was thoughtful about making sure that I connected with others on this trip and that I participated in everything. I thought I had it covered.

But I suddenly realized that, because I was here before, I now had EXPECTATIONS and I wanted them to be met. Last year, I threw myself into each day and in fact, into each event. But now I had an idea of how things “should” be, and I liked them that way. I liked doing my own joyful singing during the prayer service last year. I wasn’t ready for someone else to take the stage and share her joyful singing.

As I considered this, I also noticed that I was spending time looking forward to events, which was fun but distracting me from fully immersing myself in the event happening right now. For example, when the prayer service was not making me happy, my mind wandered to think about our upcoming trip to the waterfall, which I loved last year and looked forward to again. Further, because I wasn’t really experiencing the present moment, the time was passing without my noticing. Hence, the quickly passing week.

So, I shifted my attention to be more present. This service didn’t have as much singing, but it was still lovely. And when another woman rose to sing, I decided to try and pay attention and not escape into some fun fantasy.

She launched into Ave Maria and I felt transported by her beautiful voice. I looked at her standing in the front of the room. She appeared to be very plain and almost timid so the voice was a surprise. As I continued to look at her, I saw a white shadow around her head.

I blinked to refocus my eyes, and it slowly formed again. It was close around her head but not symmetrical. As she sang and I watched, the white shadow pulsed and grew around her head and expanded to include her right shoulder. Soon, a small rainbow of colors appeared close to her head, but the white was still the largest and had the strongest pulsating life.

If I had escaped into my little fantasyland, I would have completely missed that.

I hope you are fully enjoying whatever moment you are in, and then as it passes, fully enjoying the next one.

Love and light,
Marie

Unheard music

The words in the picture say:

Don’t you hear it? she asked & I shook my head no & then she started to dance & suddenly there was music everywhere & it went on for a very long time & when I finally found words all I could say was thank you.

For the past few weeks, I have been nursing this cold and been without a voice. I went for nights on end without sleep and my brain was cloudy. Adding chemo to that, twice, weighed me down, and my vibrational energy became heavy and sad. It felt a bit like swimming in mud and I couldn’t seem to get moving in any direction. During the last chemo, I just sat and cried.

For weeks, all I could see and feel was grey and death and sadness, and it kept getting worse. I couldn’t see the light, I couldn’t hear the music, and I couldn’t feel the beauty.

But then, you were there. You sent emails, brief comments, breezy texts and good food. You sent invitations and you even showed up in person. So even if I still was mired in the muck, you provided small glimpses of good vibrations. I couldn’t feel it right away, but you kept at it until I could see the joy and light you bring, and until I could let some of that in. I began to feel your presence as you went about your life, and that helped me to shift in ways that are small but significant.

Thank you for doing your dance and for keeping it going until I could hear the music.

Thank you.