Archive for Recovery

Unspoken Goodbyes…

Posted in Blessings with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 25, 2013 by Tanya

Unspoken Goodbyes

Undoubtedly one of the most difficult things to come to terms with are unspoken goodbyes.
Regardless of who it was that left, how or why…their absence creates a noticeable void.
Sometimes, even if the person that left was you, words left unspoken can drive you to distraction and leave you replaying scenarios in your mind.

They may often decrease in occurrence, but they exist nonetheless. Unwelcome shadows with the power to dim, if not obstruct your sunshine.

It’s that maddening missed opportunity that often plagues us after the fact.

What might you have said, had you had the option?

People who have passed on unexpectedly. Friends or loved ones who have elected to move on.
Those people you have chosen to walk away from without any form of real closure.

What is it that binds our thoughts with emotion and the desire to punctuate the end of every
sentence?

Why is it that even when we are certain we’ve moved on, part of us remains to attend to that
which was left unspoken?

For me, I believe there exists a need to ’cause no harm.’ Consequently, I worry that in some
ways perhaps I have and I find that to be completely unacceptable. I’m far from perfect, but
I don’t wish to be callous either, particularly with someone else’s emotions.

It troubles me that there are those people whom I irrefutably loved in my lifetime that elected
to exit without a goodbye and I am left with an overactive imagination and the question of ‘why’?

If I were to merely draw upon logic and reason, perhaps I could justify overriding my emotions
with a definitive refusal to care…but somehow I doubt that. Because I do care…very much.
It’s an extremely large part of who I am and who I’ve become.

Which leads me to an alternate reflection of unspoken goodbyes:

Unspoken gratitude.

Despite the awkwardness or regret which can often filter in with the absence of a goodbye,
at some point I regain the ability to turn the majority of my attention toward a more positive
light.

I begin to sift through memories still cherished and able to produce a smile. I reflect on
all of those things which made that particular moment in my life a necessary and vital piece
of the puzzle that helped to decipher who I am today.

It’s never easy and of course it still hurts. But for me it’s imperative if I’m to maintain any
sense of sanity or understanding. I find it far easier than drowning myself in despair over
something I often have no control over.

If I am able to be grateful for that person’s presence in my life, rather than being bound by
their absence…then I am able to look upon that time together as a gift and move forward.

“People come into your life for a season, a reason or a lifetime”….and I believe that to be true.

There are a multitude of lessons to be learned if we allow ourselves the opportunity to listen
to their echos…even in the absence of a goodbye.

Monarch

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The Little Things

Posted in Blessings, Synchronicity with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on May 18, 2013 by Tanya

sunset-photos-04

It’s always been about the little things, but too often I get caught up in the chaos of everyday, lost inside my thoughts and forget what I’ve always known. Today, I remembered.

All of the things I deem important on a daily basis, pale in comparison to the little things when I actually take the time to notice. Funny, how I always have to come full circle to discover what I’ve always known. But then, I suppose that’s part of my particular path. Perhaps part of my personal lesson is to repeat what’s important until I remember without question, without hesitation and without prompting. In all fairness though, this time was a bit more difficult. Mom’s sudden passing left me feeling uprooted, a bit lost and very aware of my own mortality. I’ve lost many people in my life, my son, my father, other relatives and friends…but this time, it was Mom…and that made it exceptionally unique.

I’ve spent the better part of the day wandering around to determine how I’d like to spend my day off. During that time, I’ve walked through our gardens, sketched in the front yard, smelled the beautiful fragrance of lilacs, roses and lilies, watched the bees carrying on about their business and listened to the doves, sparrows and orioles singing everywhere. I found myself smiling at the simplicity of it all. I’m always in such a hurry to cram everything into that one day off, to accomplish something so spectacularly worthwhile, that I overlook the obvious. I am happy.

I have been blessed in so many ways and it’s never the huge monumental things that truly make me smile. It’s the little things.

  • Hearing my children or my partner say “I love you.”
  • Amber calling to check on me or to say “Momma, I miss u face.”
  • Misty giggling into the phone or uploading the latest videos of my beautiful grandson.
  •  Tyler writing ‘Lewis’ on all of his schoolwork and reminding me that I need to add his birthstone to my Mother’s ring.
  • Being greeted at the door after work by an over zealous beagle, eager to relay the hardships she’s endured while I was away.
  • Knowing that Jan is always there to come home to.

I am surrounded by friends and family and although we no longer live in the same state, the distance between hearts is never very far. Which reminds me….

A few weeks ago, my Mom had been on my mind quite a bit and as I stood in the kitchen washing dishes, I was contemplating all of the things that had occurred and all of the things I wish I had done. In my heart, I cried out to my Mother for answers and immediately heard a loud noise behind me. I spun around and walked toward a shadow box hanging on the wall and let my eyes fall to the floor beneath it. There I saw a Christmas ornament lying on the floor. As I stooped to pick it up, I noticed that it had Eeyore on it and realized that I hadn’t ever recalled it being there before. I replaced it on the shelf and returned to the dishes wondering what in the world the significance of Eeyore might be. Later that night, when I relayed the story to Jan, she smiled and said “Honey, I think maybe you’re missing the point here.” When I asked what she meant, she stated simply “that perhaps there isn’t any significance to Eeyore, but rather that you called out to your Mother…and got a response.”

Leave it to me to take the difficult route. 🙂

Two weeks ago, I had gone into the kitchen to make some toast. It was beautiful outside and we had all of the windows open for the first time this year. Unlike Jan who apparently has an internal furnace, I must possess an internal iceberg, I’m always cold. In any case, I’m standing in front of the toaster oven with my hands stretched out and warming in front of it when I happened to look back up at the shadow box beside me. The ornament was still in place, but from the corner of my eye I noticed something flashing to the right. I turned my head to see a key chain dangling from the side flashing the word “Mom.” I ran immediately to the other room to grab my glasses, just to be certain of what it was I was seeing. Sure enough…it was Mom. Kinda freaked me out…but in a good way. I later checked with Jan and she said the key chain had been hanging there for about six months, apparently I just never noticed…until it was important I guess.

It’s the little things.

At Christmas this year, I had decided to decorate a special tree in honor of both of our Mothers. I bought a small rosemary tree and embellished it with silk monarch butterflies. It survived for quite awhile and has since been placed outside. Last week I came home to discover that Jan had placed the Monarchs throughout the kitchen and the front room of the house. One of them was placed carefully on the key chain at the corner of the shadow box. ❤

It will always be about the ‘ little things’….and maybe now, I’ll remember.

 

 

 

Moving On

Posted in Blessings, Poems, Pulseline with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 30, 2012 by Tanya

middleroad

Eventually,

as the pangs of hurt

begin to subside

and are replaced

by the dull ache

and awareness

of void.

The senses return

however raw

from the trauma

of  unexpected change

and loss.

Moments of yesterday

seep through

the pages of today

and melancholy

slips unhindered

from the corners

of your eyes.

Time is not your enemy

although it no longer

resembles a friend.

Faced with the mirror

of mortality

and a journey

that ultimately ends.

You search the heavens

for solace

and pray that someone hears

each aching beat

of your heart

and erases

the moment

that awakened fear.

When the realization

emerges

That the world

isn’t going to cease

merely because

you have no desire

to haul yourself

out of bed

that your responsibilities

will not

complete themselves

despite your wishing

they would.

Perhaps then,

you will begin

to acknowledge

that regardless

of how deep your sorrow

you are breathing still

and moving on

doesn’t mean

that you’ve forgotten.

It simply means

that you’re learning

to accept what happened

…enough…

to continue living.

Damn Your Genes Momma!

Posted in Blessings with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 22, 2012 by Tanya

“Damn your genes Momma”!

That just happened to be the very first thing I heard after lifting the phone to my ear. “Oh no…you bought the Haagen Daz, didn’t you”? This of course, brought immediate laughter from my youngest daughter. “No Momma, I went with the sherbert.” “Too bad honey, I definitely would have went with the coconut macroon Haagen Daz….but then, that’s probably why I needed to bring the treadmill home too.”

“So what’s up”?

“Well, I went to the bank today to make a withdrawal, and after the teller handed me my receipt…I looked at it, then back at her, then back at the receipt again.” “This went on long enough to make both of us uncomfortable and the teller beside her to ask what was wrong.”

“Are you sure this balance is correct”? “Mom, I knew that it wasn’t, there was an additional $450.00 that obviously didn’t belong to me….not that I couldn’t have used it and I couldn’t believe I was saying it out loud….but I actually insisted to the tellers that it wasn’t mine.” “Despite the fact that their records were showing otherwise, I argued enough that they agreed to look into it and call me once they straightened things out.”

At this point I was laughing. “I’m proud of you honey, and despite what you might currently think…you did the right thing.”

Our conversation went on to discuss all of the probabilities of who the money actually belonged to, along with my daughters concern that one of the teller’s drawers might be short and the prospect of somebody having to compensate for the error. I couldn’t help but smile.

“Good things have a way of rippling out honey, in ways you could never begin to imagine.” “The good you did today, will inevitably find it’s way back to you.”

“Thanks Momma, but Nick’s gonna give me a hard time for giving it back.”

“It doesn’t matter honey, you know you did the right thing.”

“Oh jeez…hang on Momma.”

“I’m in the grocery store and I dropped some eggs….what’s that you were saying about good things happening”?

I just had to chuckle again. “It’s all about perspective baby.”

“Momma, what ARE you talking about”?

“Honey, after you dropped the eggs, did you tell somebody”?

“Yes.”

“Good…were they angry or irritated or tell you that you had to pay for them”?

“No, but I would have paid for them.”

“I know, but you’re missing the point.”

“No Momma, they weren’t angry, they actually said not to worry about it.”

“Right. They weren’t upset and you didn’t have to pay for them so it’s all good right”? “The only reason you probably dropped them to begin with is because you were preoccupied with second guessing your decision at the bank…right”?

“I love you Momma.”

“I know honey, I love you too.”

Score one for Momma’s Gene’s and Amber’s Heart.

In the Eye of the Storm

Posted in Blessings with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 10, 2012 by Tanya

“When the world is in chaos, we can still have our own inner peace and maintain a sense of calm in a sea of unrest.”

-Madisyn Taylor

People who manage to maintain a calm and peaceful demeanor, despite the turmoil around them, seem to possess a magnetism that draws others to them. This calm exterior permeates from within and becomes instantly infectious and gratifying to most everyone that surrounds them.

Moments of confusion and chaos often precede blessings of clarity. During times of perceived darkness, it serves our hearts and perspectives well to remember that storms exist to afford us the opportunities to delve deep within ourselves and to extract whatever is necessary, from a pool of resources we had long since believed to be exhausted.

Maintaining a sense of inner peace and calm is imperative to successfully navigating through life’s storms.

If we can learn to locate and focus on the stillness that resides in the innermost chambers of our hearts, then we can derive and maintain composure in nearly any situation that occurs.

It isn’t mandatory that we comprehend the chaos, many of us rarely do. Neither is it realistic to believe that we could accurately predict how circumstances might unfold. Rather, what is important to remember…is how to access our own inner peace and calm, particularly when life’s storms begin to gather.

Cultivate your inner clarity through meaningful activities that perpetuate stillness and quiets your inner voice. Meditate, go for a walk, sit with nature, write, sketch, paint…create.

Whatever you choose to do, allow your heart to embrace the stillness and discover the haven reserved for you. Illuminate your soul with such tranquility, that it will lead you through even the most tumultuous of ebony storms. You will emerge victorious a midst a whirlwind of chaos…stronger, wiser and with clarity and the presence of mind to calm it all…

Again…and again…and again.

If we remember to delve deep, despite the chaos, everything we’ll ever need…already exists inside…patiently awaiting…our discovery.

“Do not be deceived by your senses,

Your feelings of fear and uncertainty,

For even as the tempest may howl,

Just beyond

Lies a serenity,

That you would

Not find otherwise.”

Learning to Navigate

Posted in Random Thoughts with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 8, 2012 by Tanya

It’s been quite awhile since I’ve written, there’s been rarely a moment to catch my breath. But today, gratefully, it’s been a good day…so I thought I would take a moment to share.

The journey that I’m referring to began approximately ten years ago, when my nephew Tyler was born. Reading my former blog entry will bring you up to speed.

Tyler & I moved to the Cape with my girlfriend Janet approximately three years ago and during that time, things have been trying to say the least. Initially, I felt as if I had awakened to an artist’s dream…I was fascinated and mesmerized by the beautiful and breath taking scenery that surrounded me. Oceans, beaches, wildlife, galleries and artists everywhere…I was immediately rooted within my version of heaven on earth. But all of this was quickly overshadowed by a storm brewing within my son.

Tyler has undergone countless evaluations and received a multitude of diagnoses. And although I’m certain this list is far from complete, so far the doctor’s have determined that he has Asthma, Allergies, ADHD, PTSD, Anxiety Disorder, Asperger’s Syndrome and Wolf Parkinson White Syndrome. The latter brought about a trip to the Boston Children’s Hospital for a heart catheter ablation this past June.

We have been to countless doctor’s, specialists, counselors and behavioral therapists in an effort to not only secure the proper and most appropriate care for Tyler, but also to address the behavioral issues that have recently begun to spiral out of control.

Tyler is an extremely bright boy and his development was not hindered in the least in regard to speech, walking and learning among his peers at an early age. Quite the contrary, Tyler was quickly dubbed ‘the little mayor’ due to his friendliness and talkativeness with others. He maintains a seemingly infinite wealth of knowledge and facts and is eager to share these with anyone willing to listen. He possesses an inquisitiveness that rivals none and has an imagination to match. Academic evaluations have deemed him above average or superior in most of his subjects, but socially he has begun to stumble.

Tyler’s early years were anything but usual, and he dealt with far more than I care to remember at such a young & impressionable age. Despite everything, we have arrived here…to this place of reckoning, awakening, frustration and tribulation. And now the three of us have been thrust into an arena where we are uncertain of the rules, the game plan or strategy techniques. The adults at least, are well aware of the risks & what’s at stake…but how to relate that to a child who is struggling to understand EVERYTHING….?

This summer has been wrought with behaviors, tantrums and frustration. After nearly eighteen years in the field of Human Services & Special Needs, I’d like to believe that I’m a patient person, that I possess an understanding, compassionate, empathetic and loving heart. But I would be remiss in complete honesty, if I didn’t say that all of these things have been strained and stretched to the limit these past few months in particular. I love my son with all of my heart…and he is my son, I knew it the very first moment that I held him. My sister has countless struggles of her own, and although she believes she will always be his mother…she has, in truth, been absent from day one. But this is not about her, or her struggles, or her inability to be the nurturing parent that Tyler deserves. This is about a little boy, struggling to feel comfortable in his own skin, anxious to belong, to fit in…to feel safe and loved.

Over the past few years, I have watched Tyler grow and evolve from a friendly, talkative little boy…to a child frightened of his own shadow, terrified of bugs, uncertain of his friends, unwilling to leave my side and wishing he were dead…simply because it’s bedtime.

I distinctly remember the little baby I held in my arms, the toddler so willing to please and help out…and the little boy…who begged me to stay. This is not currently that child. This child is angry…beyond words. This child, despite his intellect, reverts to baby talk and tears. This child wants to be in complete control of his surroundings and his world…this child, assumes that everyone hates him, nobody cares about him and everyone should simply die. This is the child I am currently struggling to support, the child I want to save, protect, empower and love.

He currently growls from depths, I never knew existed…spewing hatred and vile things that look abnormally wicked on his sweet and beautiful lips. I know that this hatred is meant for neither Jan or I, but it doesn’t help to lessen the pain that it ultimately inflicts. There is a tumultuous storm of anguish and emotions brewing inside of my little boy…and although we’re doing everything in our power to ultimately assist him…we haven’t a clue how to save him.

That doesn’t mean however; that either of us have given up. Despite the frayed nerves, frustration, feelings of powerlessness and confinement…we’re still here. We’re still trying and still reaching for answers that we hope one day soon…will come.

In the meantime, we haven’t wavered from a path of structure, consistency & love. What more can we do?

Despite everything, I still see the same little boy that I held in my arms and promised to love & keep safe. This path, may not be the same one that I initially envisioned…but it’s our path…and if nothing else…it’s a path still woven with LOVE.

The Chrysalis Project

Posted in Pulseline with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 16, 2012 by Tanya

Like most children, I spent a good portion of my youth fantasizing about who I might become when I grew up. And although there were a multitude of choices to select from, I usually exercised the child’s prerogative to change my mind on a daily basis. However; one of the things I always knew I would become was an Artist.  Even at such a young and impressionable age, I also knew that more than anything else in my lifetime, I wanted to discover a way to simply ‘Touch Souls.’ Although a clear method for this phrase has continued to elude me, the underlying concept has never changed.

Much of my adulthood has been centered within the Human Service arena, a surprising, yet rewarding detour into the lives of countless, extraordinary people. Artistically, my experiences have been varied and rewarding also, but not quite the particular caliber I would prefer. So I continue to challenge myself to be accountable and to strive towards excellence in every respect.

While contemplating all of this recently, I was struck by the realization that although I had always assumed my first love to be art, it was actually a close second to helping others.  Why something that was right in front of me had managed to elude me for so long is beyond me. But from this realization was born an idea….a brand new project to satisfy both passions in a creative arena meant to inspire, encourage and engage people in helping each other through random works of heART.

I have been working diligently to set up another website and accompanying blog with all of the specific details. I am absolutely elated at the prospect of sharing this project with everyone and hope with all of my heart that it creates the ripple effect I expect.

As soon as the sites are completed and ready for debut, I will post the appropriate links here.

In the meantime, have an absolutely wonderful day!