How To Feel Centered In the Eye Of The Storm

April 27, 2012 by  
Filed under Blog

Photo By Angie Rubin

Even though we know if we settle down, breathe and center ourselves that our outlook on life will change, we are often so ramped up that we are not able to do it.  Instead we feel like we are being swept up by life or at best trying not to trip while we’re running our perceived obstacle course.

It would be so simple to stop it all by just stopping our brain from jumping around.  But, somehow this simple action becomes unattainable.

As I go through my personal development I realize the three possibilities that play out:  1 – totally lost in life events and having a feeling of no control, 2 – partially lost while a nagging feeling that there is a different way to be keeps tugging at my psyche and 3 – a centered and in control experience.

I am proud to say that feeling totally lost in life events is no longer a reality for me. I now reside in the space between being partially lost and in control.

Getting to this space has taken a lot of self-growth.  I have had to learn to let go of comparing my life to that of others – after all every life is unique – as well as learning about acceptance and compassion.

When we learn to exercise acceptance and compassion toward ourselves we let go of demanding and unrealistic level of perfection.  We are reminded that life’s journey is about learning and attaining wisdom and there is no space for that without trials and tribulations.

Now, when we truly realize that there is no way to compare two people’s existence, as each one of us has a truly unique experience, we also drop envy and jealousy.

So armed with compassion and acceptance while rejoicing in the loss of envy and jealousy, we start to feel a sense of purpose and control over our responses to life’s events.

It is not an easy process.  And it’s not a process without setbacks. But, it is a process worth under taking.  Living as if we are mere leaves blowing in the wind is not the most satisfying way to walk through life.

So when life feels out of control; stop, breathe, exercise acceptance and compassion and see your outlook change.




It Is What It is

October 21, 2009 by  
Filed under Blog

All things for a reason… A quote I have said for more years than I can remember. A quote that I honestly always believed in. 

But now I don’t. Because if that was true then why? Why didn’t my trio of saints answer my prayers? Saint Rita, all things are possible, Saint Anthony, all things can be found, Saint Jude, all things will glorify God’s name. I prayed to them every morning, asking that through the intercession of their prayers and God’s perfect will, my prayers would be answered. But when I prayed the hardest I had ever prayed in my life, they weren’t answered. Or were they?

In March 2006 we thought my husband had a cold. The EKG showed several silent heart attacks. Stents were put in and life didn’t change; for him or for me. Or so we thought.

January 7, 2008. I left for work at 7AM. A few hours later I get a message to call my daughter. “Call her now. It’s important”. Somehow I knew, even before I ever heard her voice. “He’s been trying to reach you. He drove himself to the hospital. Not to worry though, he says he’s fine”. But I knew he wasn’t, or he wouldn’t have gone to the hospital and then life changed for both of us; an open heart surgery had taken place.

For the next 3 months our lives did not include an alarm clock. We went for daily walks and slowly he rebuilt his strength. Short walks became longer ones. He told me he wished I was retired too, so this could be our life. I did wish it too. We slept late and took naps. We spent 24 hours a day together. Our world had been rocked hard and we now realized just how fragile life was and how fragile his heart was.

September 2008. My husband listed for a heart transplant. It helped that he always took care of his health. Complete physicals, eyes, teeth, flu shots, each year and every year. We ate healthy; wheat not white, pepper not salt, grilled not fried. A window had been opened with the opportunity of a new heart. We had renewed hope. 

But is this really happening? What if I just pretended we were living in the Truman Show? If I unzip the sky, could we escape from this world spinning out of control?

I had never experienced such a deep paralyzing fear.  I thought to myself; can I kiss him goodbye and let them take him, knowing they are going to take out his heart and put in a new one from a donor? He always taught me quality over quantity, always. So asking for a new heart for him, were we really then asking for quantity of his life over quality?

But I never had to make that decision… In 2 months while waiting of a donor his heart had become too weak. There was only one decision left to make, return to the hospital or call Hospice. I didn’t have to ask my husband. I knew his answer. I told his doctor I was taking him home.

I am eternally thankful for the time we had and that he didn’t have pain and his dignity to the very end. Never showing sadness or fear, he humbled me with his strength. He never lived like he was dying. He held on to my knee as I sat beside him on the bed. I knew he didn’t want to leave me. December 19 at 4:00 AM while I held his hands he left. No longer would he walk beside me in this life.

So really, how can all things be for a reason? For what reason wasn’t a donor found in time? For what reason was our world torn apart? Why during the most devastating situation I have ever faced, was the person who loved me more than anyone not by my side? How could all that we went through be for a reason?

Gone are the days of playing make-believe. Situations will enter our world that we have no control over. No matter how much we try, we can never run fast enough to avoid them. We will have questions yet never receive answers. Maybe the reality is that all things are not for a reason. Maybe the real truth is simply, it is what it is.