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She made her dash count August 30, 2007

Posted by makingyourdashcount in Healing Yourself, Life Journey, memorials, mourning, Wilkes-Barre.
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If one were to sum up mom’s legacy in a line, it would not be about her high school students, although many of them tell us that having her as a teacher was a life changing experience. It would not be about her mothering; she was as good of a mom as any 60’s generation mom was. Her legacy, as relayed by a former student teacher was,
“…(she) taught life, and how to get the most from it, and how to not let it get the most of you.”

So far I’ve written over 100 thank you notes. I wrote a eulogy of sorts. I wrote an obituary. I have written for other people. Now it’s time to write for myself.

Mom.

She knew that life changes instantaneously. We don’t choose the changes and we can’t stop the changes. They just happen and we have no real choice but to deal with them, because not dealing with it them is tantamount to burying our heads in the sand. Mom was never an ostrich.

She never won the lottery or found an unexpected inheritance. Her life changes were never so joyous. Instead, she first lost her oldest son to AIDS, standing by him all the way from diagnosis to demise, then her youngest to manslaughter. When my daughter died, she lost her oldest grandchild. She dealt with repurcussions of business failures. She dealt with a diagnosis of cancer. All through this, she left a legacy of facing life and not letting it get the best of you. Mom was always in the driver’s seat.

The world still goes on, even if we choose not to. So we deal with life changes, whether we like them or not.

Give me the choice of prayer or good Doctors, I’m picking the Doctors- EVERYTIME. August 9, 2006

Posted by makingyourdashcount in Cancer, faith, God, Healing Yourself, power of pray, Prayer Requests, rants, Thoughts.
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I admit I am angry. I am angry that we live in the year 2006 and that there are people who truly believe that the more people who are praying for someone the better chance that person has by being graced by God in healing. I am angry that people believe that whoever gets the highest heavenly tally of prayer is the one who wins divine intervention.

I DO believe in the power of prayer for personal healing; just as centering oneself through meditation can be healing. Stress affects immunity. Whatever helps you reduce your stress will help you heal. And the knowledge that people want you to heal always makes you feel good and can heal.

My in-laws live their faith. I know that this is a primary reason that they are as vigorous as they are in their mid 80’s., even given a longer than decade romp with a cancer that should have killed my mother in law years ago. I credit 3 things for her success over her multiple myeloma over the past decade and a half.

Her Faith
The AMAZING Doctors at the Mayo Clinic
The fact that she actually DOES what they tell her to DO

And I credit my father in law’s faith with staying centered throughout her and his health challenges. I have never heard any anger about their conditions. They pray and then they deal with things quite pragmatically. They “pray with their feet.”

I have never understood the concept of praying for tangible results without taking the steps necessary to get them. This reminds me of the athlete who prays before a game, messes up on the field , loses, then says,

It wasn’t meant to be.

Um…. accept your errors and improve on them. Don’t give it to God. Seems to me with all the hate, illness and poverty in the world, God has MUCH more important things to concentrate on than your game or algebra test.

I think the first time I really discovered my anger in the concept of “praying for THINGS” was about 8-10 years ago, when I was active in my older daughter’s elementary school. At the time the PTA had several projects underfoot addressing basic literacy issues and fund raising for computers. I will never forget the prayer circle that was credited with volunteer hours for sitting in someone’s home, drinking coffee and praying for the school, it’s staff and students. Pray… FINE.. then get in there and teach a child to read. Pray with your feet.

Lest you think I am a Godless heathen, I do pray. When I pray collectively with friends for whom or whatever, I accept the fact that prayer is a sacred moment with my thoughts, with the people around me and with my God. It is the way “I” cope with crisis; I do not pray for tangible results; I pray as a way to help center ME to make ME more responsive to whatever needs I recognize.

Healing is not a result of other people’s prayer.

Healing is the result of having the right doctor, getting the right treatment, having the right attitude, and being diagnosed in time for modern medicine to take a stab at it.

I have never understood how people believe that fate is in God’s hands. If you medically intercede once God has “granted” you an illness, aren’t you then interrupting God’s will with man made interventions? Give me the right doctor, hospital and if need be clinical study ANY TIME.