May 13, 2010 by  
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Thoughts On Grief

May 13, 2010 by  
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When my husband passed away almost two years ago, I kept trying to find meaning in the loss.  How could so much pain be for nothing?

I have since learned that is a very common reaction.  We lose so much that we want something in return; wisdom, insight, super powers, or even just a special seat in heaven.

I remember saying over and over that I was still the same person I had been before Chris got sick and the same person after he died.  But I was wrong.  I would soon learn that loss and grief have a way to bring us face to face with whom we are and life itself.  Many things change after great loses especially how we want to live our lives and what’s important.

In the article by Roshi Joan Halifax, posted on this site ( she writes:  “To deny grief is to rob ourselves of the heavy stones that will eventually be the ballast for the two great accumulations of wisdom and compassion.”

Grief is not something to be desired but if it knocks on your door, let it in, offer it a seat and make friends with it.  It is a strange friendship the one we form with grief; while it rips us apart it also builds us up in a different way.  If we let the friendship flourish from the destruction a deep sense of self will rise.

I can now tell the Deborah of years past that much does change and while I don’t know about a special seat in heaven I do know of a different seat on earth build on solid ballasts.

Give sorrow words; the grief that does not speak whispers the o’er-fraught heart and bids it break.  ~William Shakespeare


Live Your Passion

May 1, 2010 by  
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Sandra Magsamen

Artist Sandra Magsamen knows firsthand what it takes to make your passion your life’s work. Her handmade pottery has become a multimillion-dollar gift business and has expanded to include home décor, jewelry, bedding, greeting cards and more. She shares insight on how to live your passion.

There are no big secrets to making your dreams come true and doing what you’re passionate about. But there are three ingredients found in every dream realized. They are:

  • The belief in yourself and in your dream
  • A heaping dose of passion and imagination
  • A lot of hard work

Take the following steps toward pursuing what your are passionate about:



Embrace All Parts Of Life – Video Blog 7

April 28, 2010 by  
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No Point In Crying Over Spilled Milk

April 27, 2010 by  
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What a brilliant saying that is!  The point is: it has already happened, there is no going back.  Sometimes it is devastating but there is no fixing.  The situation has changed and life has changed.

We morn the loss but eventually have to accept the change.  If we don’t; life stops on its tracks.

So whatever has happened in your life, recognize it, embrace it, make it a part of history and then take a step forward.  Accept the possibility of different life and the possibility of surprises.

Life is a journey.  While we can map up the route, we never know what accidents and road constructions, will veer us in different directions.

Accepting and surrendering is mature and powerful.  Giving up isn’t.  And there is a huge difference between the two.


Video Blog 6 – Live Life Fully Today

April 20, 2010 by  
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Learning how to live life fully


Celebrate Life

April 16, 2010 by  
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Today I received an email from my sister in law with an attachment from a pen pal of hers in Australia whose brother had passed away a couple of days ago from brain cancer.

As I read the attachment – a letter written by the spouse left behind – my heart ached.  It could have been written by me.  In the letter the wife writes about her husband’s indomitable spirit in the face of incredible pain and loss.  Even as he lay dying he wanted to try one more treatment.  That was my husband as well.  The day before he passed he dragged himself to a restaurant to have lunch with my nieces; just the three of them.

I’ve learned a lot of things from my husband: courage, strength, and love.  And I have also learned that life is really precious.  Even when he had lost his hair, his physical strength and in return was left with incredible pain, he wanted to live.  He wanted to live so much that he would take life even if he had to look gaunt and couldn’t do most of things his 6’, 200lbs frame once did.

I try to remember that when I want to complain or feel sorry for myself.  I have life and because of that I have the whole world.  Think about it.


Video Blog 5 – Making The Decision To Have A Happier Life

April 12, 2010 by  
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Having a more satisfying life starts with the making the decision of being happier today.


Rearranging Myself

March 21, 2010 by  
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The lenses we view life through continually oscillates during our journey. We enter different chapters of life which can change our role, how we think and what we view as top priorities. Why is it we often forget to make the shift of deleting the old priorities before adding new ones? Somehow without our even realizing, our hectic schedules become filled with what we think we are supposed to do. We don’t place a priority of what we want to do with our life. We think there will always be tomorrow.

My husband and I had plans and dreams for our future. When he died, all of our those plans and dreams left with him. My list of priorities became a blank page. My heart was broken in accepting that our tomorrows together would never be. My lenses of life became blurry as I listen to the silence and search for direction

The movie “Up” offers us a gentle reminder. With a special zest for life, Ellie always wanted to take a trip to Paradise Falls. She had brochures and photos and it was clear her excitement on someday going to this magical place. Her marriage with Mr. Fredrickson however kept going in other directions and the trip was never made. Filled with regrets after she dies, he looks with through her “My Adventure Book” with deep sadness. Yet in the photos it is obvious the adventures of love and happiness they shared as they grew old together. On the last page she offers him a special gift of wisdom… ”Thanks for the adventure – Now go have a new one! Love, Ellie”

My goal now is to keep my list of priorities extremely simple…

Live in today. Quiet my mind. Carefully choose how to spend my energy. Learn how to just be.


My Husband’s Birthday

March 4, 2010 by  
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Today is my husband’s birthday. Celebrating this day was always a special event. His personality was such I called him “my baby boy” as he never grew too old to have silly fun. One year I surprised him with horseback riding on the Buffalo River. Down a dirt road in Yellville, Arkansas, we celebrated at this small B&B surrounded by nature. One year with our eyes filled with tears, we celebrated life attending the funeral of a young lady very dear to our heart, the daughter of a life-long friend.

His birthday in 2008 was another celebration with tears. The day before, after three emotional weeks in the hospital, I had brought him home. After a quintuple bypass in January, his heart was getting weaker. His cardiologist had called in a specialist from the transplant center, which the nurses referred to as the heart failure clinic. His favorite nurse hugged him goodbye saying “If anyone deserves a new one, you do.”

Never did I imagine that would be his last birthday on earth. Last year I celebrated his birthday with him, and yet without him. His ashes at home, are inside a beautiful hand carved wooded box. Two crucifixes lay on top, gifts from the priest who married us and presided over his Funeral Mass.

And now 2010. I feel like a wreck. I feel more devastated than last year. I don’t choose to be sad. I don’t want to be sad. I pray that his strength will help me better accept my life without him here.

Celebrate Love and Life. Powerful words I am trying so hard to embraced with passion.


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