So it seemed perfectly natural for Maria Jordan to write the Introduction for Safe Harbor: A Workbook for Dealing With Loss.
Even though I've never met Maria Jordan we share a strong sense of connection and alignment. Although our personal experiences have not been the same, we have used some universal strategies for dealing with loss along our life's journey.
About two months ago I worked up enough courage to ask if she could write a guest post for me. Happily, she agreed, and today I am so honored to have this lovely blog by Maria on this page! She's a busy lady, but somehow she always manages to find time for her online friends. So here she is, friends, and as always, you're in for a treat with this wonderful, passionate writer.
Father Christopher Hartley shows he is both a man of God and a man of the people with his missionary work in the Dominican Republic and Ethiopia.
There is a most informative interview you can check out, along with the video, at:
I can picture the conversation would have taken place over a cup of coffee at a Saturday morning breakfast at our local diner. Mom always stayed current, civic - minded and above all, was very decent.
While she was a diabetic, she would have cautioned her friends about the use of sugar from the Dominican Republic.
Father Christopher emailed that the Pope has appointed a Haitian Cardinal. This may be helpful in the search for human rights for the Haitian cane cutters. The Popes's welcome of the new Cardinal Langlois of Le Cayes. (Haiti) is in this video.
While her life was not always easy, Mom made the best of things and managed to have some smiles along the way.
Over the years, I have had my share of personal loss. I am a nurse by profession, exposed to grief on many levels, feeling it all the same.
Have I gotten used to loss? No way...never. Have I learned to adapt, live a good and purposeful life? Yes, for the most part, I have.
I was blessed to have had the clarity, strength and loving support of my Mom when my beloved colleague died and I was badly hurt. Mom reminded me that I could let it go as I was healing ... and that I didn't have to be perfect.
In 1999, Mom even wrote me her thoughts on the subjects of death and aging. I saved them, written on a few pieces of loose leaf paper in her distinctive handwriting:
Death is a continuation of life. A part of you will always live even when your physical body is gone. If you have children or grandchildren, they are a part of you which will continue the life cycle. Maybe the color of their eyes or another physical feature. Again, maybe their thought processes or daily actions,
If you do not leave children, then other actions you performed during the natural life span will live on - things you may not even remember doing. Perhaps the child crying after the death of her parent and you providing comfort for the child. Maybe taking food to a hungry family on Thanksgiving or another day. In some way you have brightened someone's day unaware of the fact.
Death is nothing to be afraid of. It is merely the final part of life. Sometimes, just being there listening provides comfort and peace to one approaching death. To a sympathetic ear, you can voice any doubts, fears, etc that you have been harboring in your mind. A sounding board, so to speak to bring your questions in the open even if you don't always get concise answers. You get a clearer picture.
Everyone has his own opinion regarding death. However, if life has been good for and to you, I truly believe death will be a continuation of that goodness and happiness. Happiness can mean different things to an individual though. Some enjoy the simple way, others a more complex way. Regardless of the way, life after death will be composed of peace and happiness.
As one ages, they pass the trials of daily living - some successful - others not so. The heavy part with struggle are finished. The lighter parts still remain. To those in poor health, it may seem the struggle is still there. Today, science and medicine have made remarkable strides. While doctors can't perform miracles, they have made aches and pains more bearable. Every day something new is being discovered which can improve health.
A century ago, it would have seemed impossible to have a knee replacement. Today, it is almost a routine process. With this done, you can have a new lease on life.
What would Miss Sammie say about this? She'd say it was the coolest!
You can see almost as if through a child's eye, the wonders of the world around us. Each day is a brand new one - what we make of it is up to us. As the old saying goes, "The glass can be half full or half empty." We can make it a happy one with our actions or an unhappy one with our non-actions.
At this age, the choice is entirely our own. We have reached the golden age - a joyous one. It is no longer important that we never reached the top of the mountain or amassed that fortune. We did find peace and contentment along the way.
Mom wrote this for me when she was 72 and I was 37 - years old. Her words are timeless and ever so wise. Today, at 52, I hear myself paraphrasing her profound words of wisdom. Clearly Mom was the best teacher I have ever had.
Since Mom's sudden death in May, 2010, I remind myself of her gentle wisdom and strength. Keeping her legacy alive, others now find solace from my comfort of them in their times of grief. I have come full circle.
I know if Mom were alive today that we would be chatting about the Beatles over black coffee, remarking on how it could be 50 years since the Beatles appeared on the Ed Sullivan show? So thank you, Shauna (of Bravewarrior's Feathered Pen) for chatting with me about your love and expertise of the Fab Four. Your article on John and Julian Lennon is amazing. Your research is so thorough, giving us new knowledge about them and the family, and your passion for Julian really shines through in your writing.
I often say: 'take it easy / be gentle with yourself, so please enjoy this classic song by John Lennon: "Watching the Wheels" (one of my mantras):
Here in Pennsylvania, this is the second day in a row that the sun has shone and the temperatures have been in the 50°F range! So, I decided to Spring ahead and get this post written... :)
Now I am hoping your faithful readers will take a moment to check out your Mysterious and Miraculous Culinary Contest for Bachelors, Bachelorettes and anyone who has a hankering to keep it simple in the kitchen... I have a recipe that is simmering for entry...translation, gimme a couple weeks, girlfriend... !