The Chart

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My father is currently under hospice care as his advanced lung cancer progresses. I’m here with him and my mother. Many family members and friends have come to visit and to help. As his palliative care treatment ebbs and flows, I noticed that the emphasis has been on the med and not so much the symptom. Because my mom can get anxious and stressed when she’s sleep-deprived, alone with dad and he’s in pain, I created a chart I thought might be helpful.

His liver has been compromised, so we are trying to avoid any unnecessary drugs.

 

Opal of my Eye

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Lessons from my dog:

Find a quiet, sunny place to sit and just enjoy!

Jump and run even if you’re so sore afterward that you can hardly walk.

Eat with gusto and no regrets.

Forgive quickly and stay faithful.

Always go for walks and smell flowers along the way.

Naps = good; stress = what’s stress?

 

 

The “Thought” Experiment

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by de Gouveia

I’ve realized that when I start my sentences with:

I wish…

I hope…

If only…

I’m worried…

that I set myself up for suffering (worry, disappointment, sadness and even anger). So I’m going to stop saying those things and catch myself when I think them. The way to true inner peace is to accept reality. And only when you have inner peace can you help others. This is an optimum time to try this as my father is in the hospital very ill right now. 

Want to join me?

Even Brahms Did it…

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We attended our daughter’s concert tonight. She’s a member of the Youth Symphony of the Southwest (members are aged 15-20). They played Brahms:  Symphony No. 1 in C minor and it was 45 minutes of absolute bliss.

I learned something new: Brahms so admired Beethoven and wanted so badly to create something in the same caliber that it took him fourteen years to complete this concerto.  Fourteen years.

He toiled and created on one project for fourteen years. That’s some serious perseverance.

So if you’re working on a masterpiece of any kind and you’re stressed about how long it’s taking you to create it, don’t sweat it. Just keep at it and pay no mind to time.

 

 

The Bike Ride

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I rode my bike home from work twice last week. It’s something I’ve wanted to do for several years, but was afraid to try. The route home includes driving alongside very busy traffic and crossing two freeway ramps. But I (finally) conquered my fears and did it!

While riding, I couldn’t help but see how riding a bike home was analogous to life: there are choices you make that send you off (literally) on a different path. Every bit of the way, you make choices:

  • smile or don’t smile at those you encounter;
  • appreciate nature (or don’t);
  • follow the rules/laws (or take dangerous risks);
  • breathe and enjoy the journey OR stress and rush to get to your destination

All journeys (literal and figurative) share a common theme: It’s beneficial to look ahead and do a little planning (to be prepared), but most pleasant and constructive to be fully present.

It is rarely helpful to look back.