Tag Archives: signs

“Signs”

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This past week I spent a few days in Maine, York to be exact.   Being around water is super wonderful for me, it helps ease the binds that chain me.   The ocean?  Makes me realize how small my problems are.  That is not to say that my problems aren’t important to me, they are, and I’m facing life with zest and experience, knowing a higher power has always had my back, and I highly doubt he’ll abandon me now.    But just as anytime something bad happens to you and you never really have to look real far for someone who has it not only worse than you, but much worse, and they handle it gracefully, the ocean reminds me that the reaches of self importance in extreme can be like a tital wave, gushing in here, there, everywhere until you are no longer focused on that which needs work.

I was thinking about what it’s like when you lose your identity.  For me, I was a art teacher.  I travel taught, and published in magazines, self published, even authoring a book many moons ago now.   So when that seized to exist, who am I?  What am I accomplishing?  Am I worthy of life?    So now, just these questions you probably are saying “Lighten the hell up, Donna!”.    This is where my brain goes.    I felt purpose when I taught.   I remember when I cut way back on travel teaching, a battle five years ago with depression and anxiety so high I don’t care to even think about it.    I couldn’t function.   I had all I could do to take care of myself, physically, mentally.    So teaching was cast aside and so were many “friends” who didn’t accept “the new me”.    Maybe it’s in my head, but maybe not.  When you are no longer supplying people with what they want, or need, does your existence go away?   Because if it does?   I’m here to tell you, these people are not your friends.   Friend’s stick with you through the challenges of life, and there are MANY challenges in life.  And those who don’t?   Doesn’t mean they weren’t your friend, or that they don’t care.  Perhaps they don’t.  But It’s okay.  It really is.   Because new, good, fun, meaningful things are new people are awaiting your arrival!

I’m about to embark on a “come back” if you will.   But not really a come back, but a new chapter in the life and times of Donna Scully.   Not really sure what will work for me, but I know I loved to teach, and if I went into a class in a bad mood, when I left it, I was singing and smiling.  (Insert Rocky Balboa theme song here).   KIDDING!  Have a lot of things going on, excited and happy about that.  Stay tuned!

I’ve been thinking about how painful and disappointing it can be when you are treated differently because for what ever reason, you are no longer offering what you once did.  Who is not to say that you aren’t better then you ever were?  Seriously?

I have a friend who was unfriended by many “friends” because of his political view.   A “star” to them at one time, now, forgotten.   It has to hurt.  It did when long time friends did that to me, but I’ve long since made peace with all that.    I really have.   I believe when doors close, windows open, and new adventures will reveal themselves.

I’m a creative soul, a good soul.  I am kind, honest, caring, and I love fiercely.   But age and experience has taught me that not everyone is worthy of time (and likewise, I’m sure).   So I’m rather excited about “new beginnings” that will define itself mid term.   I look for signs, pray for guidance, and am never disappointed with what comes to replace the old.    The problem I have is hanging onto what once was.    I white knuckle it until I’ve made the step of acceptance, and USUALLY when I can’t decide what is next for me, it is because it hasn’t yet been revealed.

I remember a day when I was on my way to a Michael’s, probably 30 miles from my home.  On my way there I was asking my higher power “Should I start designing in needlecraft again?”    Not five minutes later, upon entering Michael’s and heading back to the yarn department a woman I hadn’t known said my name.  “Donna Scully?”  Oh boy, how do they know me?   Anyway.  She introduced herself as a couple of my students mom.  Had recognized me from magazine pics, I guess.    (Miracle there).   Anyway, she said “Guess what I’m doing here?”  I look down at her basket which was full of this one beautiful colored yarn.   “Making a sweater?” I asked?   With that, she pulled out one of my Leisure Art booklets that has long since been retired, it was an instructional pamphlet with 5 of my sweater designs in it.  “Nice!” I said!    “Thanks for sharing!”

As I walked back to the department after our conversation I looked up, smiled and said “Thank you!”    The experience justified spending more money than I was planning on!  (I’m good at justifying when it comes to my creative efforts).

I had an epiphany a few weeks ago… alas, direction, I know what I’m doing, and the direction I’m supposed to head in.  But all eyes are not on the prize, but on what presents itself because things rarely ever turn out the way I think they are going to.   I have endless stories of this type of event happening with me.   Like one time thinking maybe I’d sell my house and move away.  To where?  Was in CT with a close friend, we were on a Craigslist adventure.     During our conversation I said I didn’t yet “feel it”.  I didn’t know where I should be, I just know I felt disheveled.   Just as I say that a sign (town sign) showed up on our right.  “Vernon” (which is also the Town in which I live in another state!”   We both laughed.  I guess I’m supposed to stay put!

Do you get these signs?  Are you listening and open to them?   I bet signs are all around you, are you open to seeing or hearing about them?

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A trip down Memory Lane

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Todays circumstances found me in old stomping grounds.    This is where I went to high school, hung around with friends, passed the test for my driver’s license, got my first checking account, first full-time job, on and on.   While driving around it was as if a movie was playing in my mind, a very vivid movie.

Drove by my sisters first apartment, the site of my first automobile accident, my dads old house…    As I went by these places memories were in full force, as if I had stepped back in time and stood there once again.    Driving by my dads former house I thought of my brother as a teen, working on a puegot that he finagled for, the arrival of my sister’s prized boat, wrestling with her on the ground (in my 20’s!).  I drove over the spot on the road where my sister was test driving my new Prelude when we saw my dads Toyota truck coming.  Our brother had been using it that day, running back and forth to the parts store.  So to be funny, I stood up and out the sunroof and flipped him off, only to see that it was my fathers girlfriend.  Boy did we get in trouble for that one.    Kimo, the dog I sold to my brother for $1 who stayed at my dad’s house for 1 day and then ran away.   A few days later he showed up on the doorstep of my parents old house, 20 miles away.  His paws were raw, puffy, but he wanted to be home!   Softball fields where both my sister and I were on leagues.  She was in an A team, I was in a C!   Houses that my older sister lived in, was cared for.  As I drove to the hospital to pick up my mom I drove past the cancer center where I brought my mother to her weekly chemotherapy treatments on two different occasions in her life; where I saw one of my childhood friends dads the last day he was alive.  The emergency room where my girlfriend and I brought my mother and the doctor came out in the hall to tell me he didn’t think she would make the night, who is her power of attorney?  Fortunately she made it through that.   The emergency room where I raced to be with my sister who was having severe abdominal cramps.  I drove 35 minutes like a maniac to get there.  Fortunately she made it then.  And sadly the hospital where I last saw my older sister.   I remember walking down the corridor as I left the final time, with legs that felt like rubber and a noise in my head that blocked my ability to hear anything anyone was saying.   I recalled the people walking by who were going to visit a loved one, they were happy, and smiled at me.   I don’t think my face moved, but I do remember wondering “Do they know I just said goodbye to my sister?”    As I’m writing this Elton John’s “Circle of Life” started to play in the background….I’m smiling now.  Now Starbucks, I went by the Taco Bell where Jim and I frequented.  One day we sat eating peering at a double rainbow.  It was absolutely beautiful.  I share with you few of many.

So many times in my life when I have felt the energy of loved ones whom have passed.   One night I was driving home from a 12 step meeting, I was driving fast on a back road.  Suddenly my youngest sisters face revealed itself vividly.  She said “SLOW DOWN”.  Well seeing her shocked me into slowing down in itself.  Mere seconds later a deer ran out in front of me.    Things like this happen to me all the time.   Some brush it off and think my “believing” is insane, for me, that’s okay that they don’t believe, but I know what I had experienced was very real, and it is those memories that help me through difficult days.   This life is not all there is.

Who can explain how I meet a stranger and somehow in the conversation say “Holy Mackaral” which I had not said since childhood, and the strangers maiden name was “Mackaral”?   The visions I saw that came around to pass a day or two later?

It has been said that when you die your whole life flashes before you.  I wonder if it will be like todays unexpected movie script?    Do you know its a phenomena that most people will reach for something that we here, cannot see, and will see and speak of seeing those whom have passed before them?    If you or anyone is going through the death or foresee the death of a loved one coming, get the book “The final Gift”.  A very helpful book which was written by hospice workers.  It speaks of this and so much more.  I have given this book out to many.

Faith is believing in what we can’t see.  Faith is something that a scientist struggles with, they believe only in what they see, hear.   Faith has helped me walk through so much in my life.  Faith gives me hope, keeps me walking forward into territory I want nothing to do with.

Yeah, today was a good day.  A day filled with memories and flashes from my past, some fun, some painful.    I find it ironic that I can remember these incidents from decades ago, songs from the 70s verbatim, and yet find myself going into the kitchen 5 times to get that which I could not remember!

Life is interesting.  Faith is interesting.   I am not a religious person, I am however a very spiritual person.   Above are mere examples of the many times in my life I have had experiences in which many others will never believe.   “Wishful thinking” I’ve been told.   Just now “Tears in Heaven” came on in the background.     It’s okay that they don’t believe me, it’s okay that they don’t believe in this happening, it’s okay because I know these incidents are real, and with all my heart and soul I experienced them in my waking hours.  Perhaps one day I will share about the vivid dreams, visions of things that unraveled just as the dream played out.  There are some experiences so meaningful, so purposeful, so timely that I will only share with a chosen few.  Why?  Because I never want anyone to taint these with their disbelief.   In an interview Bob Dylan did in the early 90’s he spoke of “knowing, the dream, the vision” in which you walk towards, set out to do, and not to share with others because they, with their own mental limitations, will squelch or tarnish that which you want, instilling self-doubt, fear, therefore not in “alignment” of what we “know” we are supposed to do.  I believe we all have purposes, some to just downright make others lives miserable! 🙂   Those purposes are revealed to us in dreams, in actions, in experiences.    Perhaps someone who has sadly been abused is to help others get out of their similar situation?  I know not, but I do know, for whatever it is, I am still here today.  Today’s experiences validated years of my life that I have not thought of in years.  Bittersweet, though serving a craving I have recently had.

The majority of the time I can hold onto all of my these experiences and as I said above, walk through rough terrain.  There are days when I am not “aligned” that I cannot get there.  This is typically when I’m delving into the depths of depression.  Another whole chapter of my life.

I hope wherever you are in life, whatever is in front of you right now brings a smile to your face, and if tears are cast, I hope you are able to hold strong to the faith that everything happens for a reason.  We may not understand it, we may never know why, but I believe someday we will.    Just my beliefs, my experiences, my life….

Believe it…. or not!  (Said in Ripley’s tone) 🙂

Gifts from the other side

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It’s been a while since I’ve written.  I’ve been working through some painful feelings, grieving, reminiscing, reflecting, and praying.   I need to let go of Jim.  I do not want to.  I feel his presence around me, as I said in an earlier post, his death has in a very strange way brought him back to me.  I experienced many signs that he is okay, that he is free.  Feeling his presence makes me selfish.  I do not want to release him.  I asked him to stay, and he did.  I am not insane, I am not making this stuff up. I believe.   But I know he has to go, and I know I need to let him go.  This isn’t something I do well or gracefully.  I want, I want, I want… and I have to be unselfish and set him free. 

I drive down the road and memories come that I haven’t thought about in years, or ever.  All positive.  It is as if he is orchestrating our story, set out in front of me in memories and placing people, places, things in my path.  It is really quite beautiful.  My heart fills with joy and I laugh, and sometimes I talk to him.

A couple weeks back I was on my way home from Boston, postsurgery appointment.  This was only days after I had found out about his passing.  All the way home I was crying, and talking to him.  The battle of denial and reality was still evident in my thoughts and actions.   As I drove into Erving, MA to make the right turn over the mountain I realized my music wasn’t playing.  Music is a vital part of my life.  It can work better than a tranquilizer!  I looked down at my stereo and watched my volume go up to 10 then down to 0, then up to 8, then down to 0.   I kept looking at it, is this really happening?  Is this you telling me you are okay?  And then the song “Knocking on Heavens Door” came on.  I pulled over and cried.   The cynical part of me doubted, started to think about what would make my volume/lcd do that.  I am like this.  I have had profound spiritual experiences and I believe.  But as time goes along they sometimes fade away, or I place them on the back burner because I’m AFRAID to believe.  Jim of all people would know how to get my attention, he knew how important music is to me.   I came home and meditated and that night my dreams of him were so surreal.  I asked him, please hold me one more time…. just one more time, isn’t this something we all say when we have lost someone?  Just one more glimpse, one more hand holding, one more hug, one more conversation….  That night when I finally got to sleep he was in my dreams, and he held me.  The details of his eyes, the warmth and molding of how my body fit into his, the way he smelled, everything was layed out so perfectly, vividly.  He did give me what I wanted.  He held me again.

Be careful what you ask for, and if you have an addictive personality, or hell, maybe this is just normal, but waking up from the dream, to the reality that he has passed brought on more pain.   Sighs.   One more time, one more time, one more time….  But over a couple of hours (after forcing myself to get out of bed because I just wanted to fall back to sleep, to go back there with him) I was able to turn the pain over to gratitude .  He DID hold me again, and he was so full of light, sunshine, he looked wonderful and he sounded so happy.  This has helped me tremendously.

I have shared the experience with my stereo with a couple friends.  A week and a half later while sharing it with another friend I stopped dead in my tracks.  What is wrong she said?  My eyes teared up, nothing…. but I walked over to my mother and said Mom, we started dating on 10/8.  Replaying the stereo volume going up to 10, back to 0, up to 8, back to zero.   It hadn’t occurred to me that the numbers had any significance.   I haven’t wanted to share this in my blog because I didn’t want nonbelievers or critics to dirty or taint this for me.  But today I feel stronger and feel it IS important to share this.  To NOT put this on the back burner, to NOT allow the cynic in me to poopoo it, and to share this experience with others so that perhaps this will help them in some way.

Jim often joked with me about being a witch.  Not like bitchy or ugly, but I sometimes possess a sixth sense, if you will.  I sometimes would chalk it up to women’s intuition, or poopoo that too.  At times it has really frightened me.  It doesn’t anymore.  But I do not practice this, nor have I worked on honing it.  I just accepted that this is part of me.  I honor that part of me.  It is a very private part of me that by writing this blog I am sharing something that I hope I do not regret.  But if I have learned only one thing in the past year it is to say what you need to say, and that I really do want to let people know who I am.  I am shedding the shell and accepting myself for who I am, forgiving myself for stupid things I have done, and celebrating that today I am alive.  This very moment as I write this blog my heart is celebrating this sunshiny day.  A day that my plans changed early on, but played out just as it was supposed to.

My grief has taken its tole on my body.  Rarely have I slept and my thought process is back down to one task at a time.  But it is getting better.  Each day I feel stronger, and each day I come closer to acceptance.  When I do not accept reality as it is, my life becomes unmanagable, my peace and serenity disappear and anxiety rules.  I have a choice to not allow this to happen.  I have the ability to choose the easier healther path.  I will do this, but as some very endearing friends have said to me… in your time, Donna, and god’s time.