Friday, October 28, 2011

Regrets

I've always heard that most people's regrets are not the things they did, but those they didn't do. Mine are the same.

Sometimes I regret that I was a 'good girl' when I was in high school. I studied hard, read a lot, made good grades. I skipped the dances, the prom, the late nights 'cruising Broad' with boys. Ya, I regret that.

Sometimes I regret that it seemed so important to me to be a 'virgin' when I married. Somehow now that seems way over-rated. I said 'no' to a young man I truly loved when I was 16. Ya, I regret that.

Odd thoughts for a cool, rainy, fall evening I suppose. But being alone tonight, tired, and knowing full well the opportunities for that kind of joy and love are long since past, ya, tonight I have regrets.

Tomorrow, in the morning light, good sense will once again prevail, and I will realize my life is most likely better because of those 'wise decisions' way back then. But right now, ya, those regrets are strong.

Regrets .. ya, I have a few.

Friday Flashback - 1966 - The Left Banke

'Walk Away Renee'
The Left Banke



And for those of you who didn't sing it over and over and over ..

And when I see the sign that points one way
The lot we used to pass by every day

Just walk away, Renee
You won't see me follow you back home
The empty sidewalks on my block are not the same
You're not to blame

From deep inside the tears that I'm forced to cry
From deep inside the pain that I chose to hide

Just walk away, Renee
You won't see me follow you back home
Now, as the rain beats down upon my weary eyes
For me, it cries

Just walk away, Renee
You won't see me follow you back home
Now, as the rain beats down upon my weary eyes
For me, it cries

Your name and mine inside a heart upon a wall
Still finds a way to haunt me though they're so small

Just walk away, Renee
You won't see me follow you back home
The empty sidewalks on my block are not the same
You're not to blame

Friday, October 21, 2011

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Holy Father, just for today, hold back the walls of darkness.
Blessed Mother, lift high for me the light that is my escape.
Do not allow the walls to collapse upon me;
Nor the gale to extinguish your light.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Friday Flashback - 1971 - Pooh !

'House at Pooh Corner'
Loggins and Messina

Friday, September 23, 2011

Friday Flashback - 1967 - The Hollies & Bobby Vee

'Carrie Ann'
The Hollies



And still in 1967 -
'Come back when you grow up'
Bobby Vee

Ya .. I remember this one well.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Friday, August 12, 2011

Friday Flashback - 1961 - The Tokens

The Lion Sleeps Tonight
The Tokens


Friday, July 29, 2011

Ready for Tattooing

Yesterday I saw Dr B, the plastic surgeon who's doing my reconstruction. He says everything is looking great .. I thought so too! He says I'm ready for the last step in my reconstruction .. tattooing. I'm excited. It's my last procedure. Oh, there'll be follow-ups, and probably touch-ups, but it's the last step in restoring my body.

I realized something a couple of weeks ago. One of the reasons I decided to go the reconstruction route was when I finally admitted I was avoiding looking in the mirror. Or when I did, a sense of mourning overwhelmed me. Since I've had the nipple reconstruction, and the shape tweaked a bit, I not only no longer avoid the mirror, I actually stand and admire. Even when I still had stitches. The shape was so much better with the little poochie place I hated removed, and the addition of nipples makes me look more 'human'. I still have quite obvious scars but they are finally beginning to start fading. As odd as it sounds, I admire the scars as much as I do my new breasts. The scars are a reminder of where I've been, of the strength that surfaced from deep inside me, of my new appreciation for life, of my finally finding direction, of having joy after many years of sadness.

If I could go back and change the last two years, I'm not certain I would.

Friday Flashback - 1961 - "Crazy"

"Crazy"
Patsy Cline

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Just for the fun of it !

From 1963 ...


And from 1965 ...

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Another Step

Today was a beautiful Pentecost Sunday with all the red vestments! I am still enjoying learning of Anglican/Episcopal traditions. The rites and the liturgy are so soothing to my soul.

Last Monday I made another step in my reconstruction process .. nipple reconstruction. Interesting procedure, measuring and marking, then three little 'V' incisions, the skin pulled up and stitched to form the nipple. Also, removing a section that I called my 'poochie place', Both procedures have made me look much more symmetrical. After I heal, in two or three months, I will go back for tattooing. I'm much more pleased now.

Still battling the insurance company with having procedures covered. Just because Federal law requires insurance companies to cover reconstruction after breast cancer, does NOT mean they cover all the procedures, even when they were pre-certified. I commented to someone recently that fighting the insurance company has been much more challenging than fighting the breast cancer. It wasn't an exaggeration. Every procedure, including my original bilateral mastectomy, has had to be appealed to have it covered. Even with pre-certification, they can say .. oh well .. we changed our mind, or need more information to decide it was really necessary, or the varied steps in breast reconstruction are only 'cosmetic'. It's exasperating.

Sometimes I miss having the leisurely time to write, to keep in touch with friends who have been so supportive, to update this blog. But I suppose that 'busy-ness' is a good sign. It means my life is returning to a somewhat 'normal' routine. It means I'm engaging in more activities. It means I'm moving forward. But I'll never forget where I've been.


Monday, March 28, 2011

Ancient Paths

Stand at the crossroads and look;
Ask for the ancient paths,
Ask where the good way is.
Walk in it, and you will find rest for your soul,
You will live in peace.

(adapted from Jeremiah 6:16)

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Gave myself permission to just sit on my nice new deck and read this afternoon! Ahhhhhh.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Friday, March 4, 2011

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Loving My Neighbor

One day last week my e-devotional was Galatians 5:14, "For the whole law is summed up in a single commandment, 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself'." It seems Paul was trying to diffuse arguments about circumcision in the early Church. He admonished that it was less important whether men were circumcised, and more important how they treated each other.

I'm quite certain in years past I've read that verse before; probably heard more than one sermon preached on it. But I never saw it quite as clearly as I did last week. Circumcision was the 'issue of the day' when Paul wrote the letter. Our issues have changed over the years, but the message is the same.

Do I love my neighbor as myself? No. It's easier when that neighbor is likable, when they agree with us, when they share our faith or our politics. When they differ, not so much. When people have different views, different lifestyles, it would seem then there is no license to berate, ridicule, or be less hospitable. Really? Over the years I've watched those called by the Christian name joke about gays, dooming them to Hell. I've watched other religions be discounted and disrespected. I've watched different denominations within Christianity tear at each other with venomous claws. How can that be?

If we truly believe the teachings of Jesus Christ, how could we entertain such attitudes? How can we stand by and watch others destroy with wounds and words and never utter a sound?

I am so sorry if I have been the one to treat someone else differently, with less love, because we viewed the world or lived our lives differently. It is not mine to judge, but simply to love. Is it possible to let people work out their own lives with their own God and simply treat them with kindness? Is that really so hard?

Honestly, I don't know if I'll ever truly 'love my neighbor as myself'. But I can take a step in that direction by saying ..

To the Gay community .. I'm sorry for the way I've treated you.

To the Pagans and the Muslims and the Roman Catholics and the Atheists .. I'm sorry for the way I've treated you.

To the aged who have given much to make my life easier .. I'm sorry for the way I've treated you.

To anyone I've ridiculed or belittled .. I'm sorry for the way I've treated you.

Holy Father, Blessed Mother, please help me allow your love to flow through me.
Help me to treat all human beings with dignity and respect, to value our diversity.
Caution me when I stand by and watch others destroy without objection.
Help me to open my mouth and say out loud, 'this is not right'.

Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner.
Let me speak words of kindness in place of hatred.
Let me bind up wounds instead of inflicting them.
Help me aspire to loving my neighbor as myself.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

"I do not want to be a Christian. I want to strive to be like Christ."
(Maithri - http://www.soaringimpulse.com/)

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Thank you Mother Mary

When I stumbled through the darkness and thought myself alone,
You were there watching, protecting, waiting.

When I doubted I would ever feel the warmth of daylight again,
You placed your arms around me, comforting, soothing.

When at long last I emptied my soul and reached for the unknown,
You penetrated the cold, stone fortress of my heart.

When I turned from the desolation of darkness,
You filled me with a brilliant light and turned me toward your Son.

Thank you Mother Mary, Blessed Virgin, Queen of Heaven.