Monday, October 17, 2011

Keep Your Enthusiasm, You Will Be Amazed At Results

Yesterday I participated in Walk for a Cure for breast cancer with my in-laws. My Mother-In-Law is a survivor and my Sister-In-Law gathered as many family members that were able to participate together for this wonderful cause. It was the perfect day and I am so happy that Kevin and I participated.
I proudly wore Pink yesterday. Through the years that was my least favorite color. I was blessed to have much joy with the color BLUE but I had some anger as I would have loved a little PINK in my life.
Through the years you learn acceptance. Until you can accept what you have been blessed with and the journey you were asked to walk you dont see the beauty in the color you own.
When I kissed my sister-in-law goodbye and hugged her with the shouts of a great job today and huge thanks for having the best team leader she thanked me for my enthusiasm.
That is one quality for which I am most proud and I was so happy to have heard someone thank me for it.
We all have envy for others colors. She shares her pinks with me, we share our blues with her.
With enthusiasm and sharing and love and excitement for each and every day we can all share our TRUE colors and when we realize that the world really is an AMAZING place to be.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Blessings During Blizzards

The end of 2010 most certainly was full of events. Lets just say I wasnt bored.

Kevin and I are proud to say we are the parents of a NYPD officer. Getting to graduation however was not easy.

December 26 New York City had a blizzard. That same day we planned a luncheon for 38 people at a nice Irish Pub and my sister and her family were flying in from Atlanta that morning. Thankfully while their flight was slightly delayed they did manage to get here. They were one of the few flights that were not cancelled.

The luncheon slowly was becoming a disappointment as many said they could not come out as the storm was worsening. We thought of cancelling it but was reminded of the cake for 50 waiting to be picked up at the bakery. We decided to go and whoever was there was there. Our feeling at that point was we had to eat anyway.

Thankfully we did have a party of 15 or so. We had budgeted for more so we told them all eat, drink and be merry. Appetizers, the works for everyone. We offered cake to the staff and the few people who were brave enough to eat out that night and bagged some for our guests to take home and we had the rest.

The storm was worsening upon leaving the restaurant. We had mom with us of course and my 85 year old neighbor but it all worked out well.

The next morning at 5AM my son in his formal uniform began walking up a main avenue with another graduate as there was no way we could get cars dug out as the Queens streets were piled with snow. Luckily a van pulled up and offered to drive them to the train and they were so appreciative and grateful.

Kevin, my sister, Seans girlfriend, my niece and her husband bundled up shortly after and began the four mile walk to the train station in the blizzard. I felt so discouraged and upset. This was not the way my boys special day was supposed to be. Tired and cold we made it to Madison Square Garden and I once again felt the blessings. It was the most beautiful ceremony and was more than worth the walk. Unfortunately we had the treck back but after it was all said and done we were grateful people.

Mom was extremely disappointed she did not get to see it but one of our local stations had it on briefly so she saw a glimpse.

Mom is now in Georgia with my sister for a few weeks. Their flight was also delayed. We dropped them at LaGuardia airport on January 1 and saw them go through security. Kevin and I went grocery shopping where we received the call to come back. The flight was cancelled and was rescheduled to the next day at 5PM.

While discouraged we tried to make them laugh. We called it a dress rehearsal and Kevin ran out and got Kentucky Fried chicken and we made the best of the situation although I will say it was getting a bit tense around here.

Sunday came. We stayed at the airport this time. They kept moving them from gate to gate...We saw this while watching the board in the terminal. We nervously could not understand what was going on. Long story short they finally took off at 6:15...just a little over an hour late.

Kevin and I took an ahhhh sigh of relief moment.

It is hard to see the blessings in the blizzard sometimes. I felt so disappointed that it did not go the way I had hoped, dreamed and planned. The cold and gray sky does eventually clear however and the sun returns. When it melts some of the piles of white away my blessings are once again visible. I knew they were always there it was just hard to see through the disappointment.

We made it through the blizzard. All got home safely. Blessings!!!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

The Greatest Gift

We all think during this hectic time of year that includes shopping and wrapping that those boxes and gift bags are so important...
Yes, a pretty wrapped gift is fun. I suppose we all enjoy receiving one or two. I will admit I do. I suppose if I was not remembered at all by anyone it would make me sad so of course I do appreciate the fun in opening the paper and appreciation that I received something nice.
I however never define these as the greatest gifts.
My greatest gift is my husband. I was the girl who wore glasses and was most definately not the most popular. A friend showed me a picture of this really cute guy and said I think I want you to meet him. I said, I will definately meet him but he is never going to go out with me in a million years. I remember the first day and how nervous I was. Well, that cute guy saw something in that shy nerdy girl and despite my moms trying to protect me (I think she thought there was no way he was dating me long too as she told me not to get my hopes up after each date lol) we have been together 32 years and married 30. He truly is my gift and dream come true.
My second greatest gift truly is my son. I am honoured to say Im his Mom. He truly was a joy to raise and I call him the best job I will ever have in my life. I never knew a person could feel such love in their hearts for someone.
For me those are my greatest gifts. While opening your boxes this weekend appreciate them but look around you. It isnt the bows, ribbons and things.....its the ones you are with that are the gifts for which you will keep receiving so much joy.
Happy Holidays Everyone.....

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Separating Emotions When Making Decisions

It is amazing how I became the Mom to Mom. I was doing better at letting her go independantly on the little mini van that picks her up at home to take her to a little ladies group or to the beauty salon. When it arrives I escort her on and I know those two locations have reliable people to see her get off as well as sit with her and wait for the return trip. I was really getting used to it until she had her latest episode with her heart. Last week I asked a neighbor to drive her to spend time with her friends. This week they are having a Christmas party and of course she wants to go and she does not want me to ask the neighbor. She wants me to let her go on the van. I know I am making my decision based on emotions. While of course I dont want anything to happen to Mom it also scares me because if something happens it will further complicate my life. I know that sounds selfish. Lets face it however, should she fall or slip and break her hip Im really going to have my job ahead of me. I dont know why Im thinking this way. I know it is ridiculous. I know I am going to draw negative to me just for these horrible visions. I know that something could happen with me there just as it can with her alone. I know all of this. I dont know why Im feeling so concerned to let her go.
I do know that I must. I do know that I will. I do know that all will turn out fine. I do know that I cant fix everything. I do...Im just being truthful when I write it is hard to not hold her hand. I try so hard to protect her. I know things are out of my control. I know this. I take her to the doctor regularly, she has blood work aall the time and the fact her artery was getting blocked was not noticed by anyone is a sure reminder there are things I cannot control.
I must stop being overly protective based on what ifs and emotions. I now know how she felt on my first day of school, or my first date, or whatever she saw me leave her to do with prayers I come home safe. Just like I survived, so will she.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Always Go With Your Gut Feelings

It has been one roller coaster of a week here for me. I have noticed now and then the past few weeks that my mom just did not seem right to me. I could not quite put my finger on what was bothering me about her but my gut just told me something was not right. Well, Tuesday morning she woke up a little earlier than usual and said she had chest pain and could I give her an aspirin. I immediately did give her the aspirin and I put her in the recliner to rest while I quickly showered. When I came out I asked her how she felt and she said it was a bit better however the pain was still there. I calmly said well Mom, Im sure it is gas but the Thanksgiving holiday is here in two days and I think it best we just clear out minds and Im calling 911 to take you to the hospital. She of course protested but I inisisted as my gut was telling me something was wrong. I dressed her, called her cardiologist to make him aware of my plans and then dialed 911. Long story short as soon as the cardiologist got the fax from the emergency room of moms cardiogram he called my cellphone to inform me that 2:00 that afternoon he was going to perform a catheterization and see what was going on. What was going on turned out that she had another blockage in her right artery this time. It was 99% blocked and he put a new stent in that day. Her doctor told me good catch...she was weeks away from a major heart attack. The crazy thing about this story is November 21, 2007 is when she had her first stent and here November 23, 2010 she had another one..three years later. She was kept overnight and came home yesterday. We were supposed to go to my inlaws for Thanksgiving so Idid not have any ot the fixings in the house but ran to the store immediately once she was settled home and got everthing in. I made her the traditional Thanksgiving and while it was just my husband, mom and myself it was a wonderful, calm and restful day. Our guts are filled with good food now and grateful I listened to it on Tuesday.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Eliminating Guilt

When my son was young and we were raising him I always had a rule with my husband. We had to try our best every once in a while to get a baby sitter and go out to either a movie or dinner or even just a cup of coffee. I always believed that it was important to keep our relationship and interests strong as one day Sean would grow up and we would still need to have common interests.

Sean is now grown and Kevin and I have common interests for which Im grateful. I am finding it harder however to not feel guilty picking up and going to dinner and leaving Mom all alone in the recliner. When Sean was small and we left him for a while he anticipated happily going to the aunts or uncles or grandmas house while mom and dad were away. Mom sits all alone when I leave. That makes me feel incredibly guilty and sad.

Kevin is so great about all of this. In my heart I know I am a good daughter and do lots of things with Mom. I must push myself to take the time with Kevin as I know Mom will be absolutely fine. We all need separation from one another from time to time. We all cannot be together every second of the day.

I invited Kevin to a movie tomorrow night and perhaps a burger afterwards. Date night. I will be sure Mom has dinner before we leave and I promised her we will take her to church Sunday and breakfast afterwards. Compromise I hope will help me enjoy the movie and not feel guilty leaving her all alone. Wish me luck!!!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Things Change, Nothing Stays The Same

I have been thinking lately how things are constantly changing in my life. I grew up, met my husband, got married, had my son, watched him grow, saw my dad get sick and then died, see my mom age and move in. We lose loved ones and then others are born to take their place. Some days are wonderful and then there are times where we feel there is a dark cloud hanging over our heads. Somehow throughout all of these changes we survive. We make it.

When things are going badly or upsetting me I try hard to remember this concept. Nothing stays the same. Whatever I am experiencing right now will not be forever. Nothing is. When things are going wonderful I dont take them for granted either as the same can be true for happiness. Embrace it, appreciate it, be grateful but never take it for granted.

I do believe in positive thinking. I believe in order to have a happy future we must do our best to take care of our current life. I try to stay healthy, and pay down debts. In some instances we do have choices for our future. I know my behaviour at times can hurt me more than help the future. If we live long enough we all are going to be faced with the future.

There are however things that we would never plan in a million years but must deal with. We wake up each day and hope for the best. We ask for strength to get through hard days. We look for opportunities to smile every chance we get.

Things change, nothing stays the same. That is life. Lets all just try to enjoy the ride.