Then What?

Into this box – old paints and thinners and primers and stains and cleaners and brushes.  Take it away. Into that box - broken phones and batteries, cords and cameras no longer blinking.  Take it away. On the porch - books and clothes and more books and more clothes, and stuff and stuff and stuff.  Take it away.  Please take it away. And paintings from the walls, and dishes from the shelves, and papers and papers and papers.  I beg of … [Read more...]

The Energy of Things

gloves small

This piece has been a while coming as I’ve looked about our home deciding what on earth to do with all of Mike’s things. “There is no rush, take your time.  Things have energy and you will know when it is time.”  This was the wisdom of Ziri Rideaux, the fabulous woman from Friends Funeral Home, who helped guide me through the process. As we sat there, Elise and I, trying to absorb this new reality, she reminded me that everything was … [Read more...]

Angels Everywhere

bench

Over and over I’ve expressed my great thanks to family and friends, old and new, for their amazing outpouring of love and support. Though not religious in any formal tradition, I’ve come to call them my angels and feel blessed to be surrounded by so many. But the story I’m about to share taught me that angels are everywhere, in all walks of life, all shapes and sizes, sometimes when we least expect it. It was a week after Mike had passed away … [Read more...]

Cracked Open.

line in sand

What is the jumping point for this writing?  Where do I begin?  You are joining me mid-chapter.  So perhaps I need to bring you up to date.  On May 8, my husband Mike went in for a simple surgery.  Two and a half hours and a thousand sorries later, they told me he was gone.  That day has become my line in the sand, life before he passed away and then the everything after. As any who have experienced loss it is a rollercoaster of emotions.  His … [Read more...]

What matters?

lee

Last night I heard a friend had passed away.  She was my age.  After two months of surgery and great pain, the cancer got the best of her. As we spoke of her and the progression of her illness over cups of tea, the thing that struck me most was a story of how in her last days of delirium she played melodies in the air.  That visual, fingers moving in the shadows, playing a Mozart Concerto was hauntingly beautiful, and terribly painful. For … [Read more...]

Accidental Joy

guitar 2

Guitar classes.  My husband gave me a series at McCabe's for Christmas this year.  I haven’t played since I was in college but was inspired to pick it back up again after all this time. It is definitely harder on this old brain to make it all work – fingering and plucking and reading and rhythm.  But it is a fantastic reminder that it is diligence and persistence that make the difference, because at each class we are all a little … [Read more...]

Guess the substance? Guess the addiction?

A patient of mine, we’ll call her Jane, described the following process.  She had manysymptoms that not only aggravated her, they also scared her.  She was worried she was deteriorating very rapidly. Here were her symptoms:  Poor energy and stamina: she did not feel refreshed after a full night’s sleep and had an afternoon slump.  Her hip joints became painful and stiff over the past year to the point where she limped.  Additionally, her … [Read more...]

Aging Healthfully: Part I

Many people ask me what is the secret for "anti-aging."  The first thing I mention is that we all "age" whether we want to or not.  True, some people seem to age more slowly than others.  Looking young is the standard.  Thus the push for products that keep the skin young, facials or even surgery that eliminate wrinkles, or magic potions that ensure youthful features and strength and stamina.  Where is that darn "fountain of youth" anyway?  I … [Read more...]

Lead in Your Plumbing?

The disastrous contaminated water situation in Flint, Michigan this year has alerted the populace across the country to the problem of lead contaminated water.  People were unaware of lead as a problem in the first place, unless you remember leaded paint and leaded gasoline.  Secondly, many of us have been unaware of how much lead is still used in our environment.  Why is lead such a problem?  There is no safe level for lead in the human body. … [Read more...]

Are You Good to Go?

G2G promo photo w_candles

Have you made a grocery list for the store?  Have you made a list of what you want to pack for that weekend away? Have you written down a list of the errands you have to run when you get a minute? Congratulations! You’ve just planned more for those things than you have for your own death! The best gift you can give your family and loved ones is to fill out Directives pertaining to your health care and death care. You need to make your wishes … [Read more...]