Tag Archives: be strong

Manufactured Fear

So the short of it is the news is scaring us again when info has to be being fabricated, at least in part. It may be just an exaggeration, but not acurate info in our news should incite everyone’s awareness reactions.

I had a rough massage Sunday morning. I think I pissed my therapist off, but have yet to fully understand, already having offered up apologies. Leaving the massage I was having the major physical response to a full body trauma release: shaking, crying, the whole 9 yards. When the involuntary shaking and crying subsided, my body started hurting as if I had consumed corn or potatoes. Everything from the top of my head to the tips of my toes, was majorly inflamed and screaming in pain. I went home and took an epsom salt bath and hydrated including a large can of coconut water. I took all my herbal remedies for inflammation. Nothing touched it so I went to bed really early to at least eliminate the depression it was causing.

This morning I woke still in massive pain. I didn’t want to go to work but knew I needed to, still no alternate solutions available. So, I took my herbal anti-inflammatories and some Advil, nothing else. Another day of fasting.

Once I was at work, the one client called us and cancelled, and the admin work was acknowledged as being able to be managed by the one front desk person. I was released to go home. Another 4 hours of sleep and the worst of the pain was finally subsiding. Down to just a massive headache and a few painful hotspots throughout my body, the office manager and acupuncturist both suggested a c-v.d test. I said sure, and acknowledged that even though I had absolutely no other symptoms, they could be right.

I started attempting to solve that. Walgreens would not accept me in the drive thru saying I needed to schedule online. I went online from their parking lot and 30 frustrating minutes later gave up. I went to Hy-Vee online to attempt to get in at one of their locations. No Hy-Vees within a 100mile radius had testing available. I went to CVS online. No rapid tests available in a 50 mile radius, and no 2day tests available at any one of 25 locations nearest me for at least a week out.

I was heading to an urgent care center for an obviously not urgent matter, when the acupuncturist called me to have me come get her last at-home e-test. Unopened and new.

I got home, sat down, downloaded the app, watched the video, and started the test. Immediately after it connected via Bluetooth it gave me a recall notice but refused to produce the “order a replacement” page, despite many attempts to do so. I even thought of starting completely over from scratch and the exact same thing happened, recall notice with inability to obtain replacement. I didn’t screenshot every single attempt, that would have been a lot of pics. I only did a few after frustrations peaked.

I’m just saying. There are some awefully big numbers being cited by news organizations when the only actual testing is happening at hospitals and health department locations. We know they have tests because that is where Nathan has received all 5 of his. But hospitals reserve them for pre-proceedure or the horribly sick people that enter the ER. It’s not the tens of thousands of people (locally) or hundreds of thousands (nationally) they are talking about.

How are the numbers so large when tests are unavailable and previously purchased tests are suddenly recalled? Who’s actually accomplishing testing?

They’ve admitted the latest variation isn’t as severe, so, are that many people really wasting all day in urgent care centers for a simple test? If they were, there would be news stories about all of the urgent-cares being overwhelmed, and I’ve driven past enough of them this week to simply know that isn’t true. There are 3 on my route to work, and several others in proximity to my daughter’s work and our regular shopping areas. None of them have full parking lots. So I’m having difficulty with my awareness, painfully not matching, the numbers that supposedly just keep climbing and climbing daily.

Just sayin’. Something smells fishy here, and it’s not anything cooking in the oven.

I may or may not, have had a c.v.d experience the last two days. To me it seemed more like a physical response to my massage, which is not unheard of. It was more extreme than I warn my clients of, but then again I am hyper sensitive these days. Regardless, I will never know for certain, and the office staff will not have the comfort of a negative because it’s simply not available.

One last thing that is still getting my goat. If this is so damn scary, and the injectable is failing at controlling it, then why on Earth aren’t we testing a couple dozen options for treatment and full recovery? So far there’s the two existing meds that people are fighting over, and one new proposed drug in testing. That’s it?!?! In my universe I’d try 12 and go with the one that works the best, or maybe get a surprising combo out of the works. It’s been a good practice in multiple arenas in my life, saved my ass more than a few times. But hey, what do I know, I’m just a stupid massage therapist trying to survive something much bigger than any singular individual can truly solve.

May you never have reactions like my body produces. May you stay healthy and be less sensitive. May we all find a true solution and our own survival. May you see the things that simply just don’t add up and use that knowledge to disarm your fears. May you know that sometimes corporations really enjoy feeding off of our fears. May you know there is always a alternative way around, through, or over, and patience is what is needed most. May you know you are always free and that fabricated fears have no home in your life. Above all: May you know that the divine loves and supports you in all that you do.

Om Shanti

I hit post and then Nathan found this in a local FB group.

Colors

On this Christmas day I think of my family. I chose not to call any of them because I disappoint them by not being simply a “regular Christian” like them. They don’t understand how I call myself pagan, celebrate yule, and still celebrate Christmas.

Mainly it’s because I educated myself enough to know that Christianity stole a lot from earlier peoples in an effort to convert people. I also understand that Jesus came to save us by teaching us what we were already looking at and ignoring (see the withheld Gnostic Gospels). Several religions already had books and teachers, teaching how to get to our divine selves, and there have been several ascended masters sent before Christ, all to show it could be done. Yet, the masses were doing anything but. Christians, Jews and Islamics, constantly fighting wars over the same damn book and a central patch of land. Other peoples fighting other wars over similar stupid reasons. 2000 years after Christ we’re still missing the point, and so now we’re in the midst of a colossal learning lesson for all of humanity. I wish I had more hope that everyone will get it for once. It seems every couple thousand years God really hits a point where he needs us to get the message or die and start over. I don’t blame the divine for hitting that wall, we very much created this mess and expect the divine to fix it for us.

I had a conversation with a client about details of that, and I must have put a massive chink in the layers of his ingrained box, because between him and his wife I received roughly $200 in tips. I’m grateful for the cash as it was very needed, but my goal was not tips, my goal was healing for both of us, and helping him see healthier more accepting ways to view things. I must have had the desired effect, and I’m grateful that the divine supported me in conveying what he needed to hear and understand. I wish I had that ability with my own flesh and blood more often.

Regardless, I do still believe in Christ and still refuse to call myself Christian. I refuse to participate in the politics of religion. I do intend to be as authentic as possible, work on myself as much as possible, and heal myself and my universe as much as possible. I can be the change this world needs to see- with enough practice. Christ taught that God could be found “in a grain of sand or a blade of grass, in the sun in your eyes or the wind on your face”, that the divine was everywhere and that we were responsible for being divine children spreading light and love, compassion, understanding, and healing.

Yet, I still find that moment manifest in Eastern philosophical practices, far more often than practiced by any one of the desert seat religions. None are perfect, all religions have flaws, and there are exceptions to every rule, but percentages seem to imply that the eastern peoples have a bit better understanding of that responsibility and how to accomplish it.

Anyway, after a play doh based conversation over color with Katherine, my client exchange before the holiday, and feelings regarding birth family, it is stirring my creativity. Perhaps I can convey, with a little divine assistance, another message of acceptance on this Christmas evening.

Colors

In the beginning
There was an
Abundant
Array
Beautiful
Uniqueness
Everywhere
Something to
Appreciate
Regardless of
Where
Gaze
Feelings Or
Descriptions
Landed

Mistakes were made
Punishments levied
People hurt
A vicious cycle
Begun
Intent on
Even
Level
Sameness
If all are same
No one can make
Mistakes
Based on others'
Rules
Or ignorance therein
If all are same
Doing the same
Then no punishments
Need be levied

Yet once colors
Become so blended
The result
Is quite
Boring
Bland
Undesirable
Somewhere between
Mud
Or 50 shades
Of murky
All uniqueness
Lost to
An icky
Mixed up
Mess

The bright
Colors
Of individual
Spirit
Is what we
Really
Long for
Everyone
Tapped
Into their
Band of
Rainbow
Into their
Vibration
Of goodness

The mistakes
Which prevent
Connection
To one
Unique
Source
Of gifted
Inspired action
Are punishment
Enough

Difficulty
Lies in
Reaching
Maintaining
Your piece
Of vibrant
Beautiful
Rainbow

Perhaps
Helping
Each other
Reach their
Beautiful
Self
Potential
Is far more
Appropriate
Than fighting
Over rightness
Or waging war
Over
Perceived wrongs

Rainbows
Of light
Bring joy
Always
Not just
When bulbs
Are strung

See
Appreciate
The beautiful
Array
Of colors
Uniqueness
Everywhere
In everything
And everyone
And you'll
Find your
Rainbow
Of God
Here
Now
This day
Always

~Treasa Cailleach

* The picture is my children under “The Magic Tree” in Lee’s Summit. It’s 5 min from our house, and I’m grateful to be so close to a beautiful celebration of living color and holiday magic. It’s a perfect blending of all things holiday and joyful unique colorful expression.

May we all have a magic tree in our life. May you have a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Merry Kwanza, Joyful Dwali (belated), Happy Yule, Savory Solstice, Happy Ramadan and Happy New Year. May you welcome everyone and support their holidays as their way to celebrate this world, all goodness, and the divine. May you see and feel how to connect yourself with your Self. May the rainbow of uniqueness fill your world with awe and wonder always. May you be present and find the healing you seek in the now. May you enjoy holidays of all kinds knowing they help people feel a sense of belonging, love and light. May you see your way past the politics of religion and sameness. Above all may you know that the divine loves and supports you in all that you do.

Happy Holidays, Om Shanti

The Magic Tree; Lee’s Summit, MO

If I could do anything?

Admist everything else that has been my life of late, that question has been on my mind. Yet I need to take care of myself at every opportunity to make up for my painful lapse. So, I have thought and thought, and now I write while balanced on my foam roller.

At first blush, 2 weeks on a warm sunny beach with no one would be awesome. No questions, no comments, no concerns, no inquisitive ramblings, no need to do this, or have to be there, no role to play, no person to be for someone. Just me, sand, sun, ocean view, and tasty cold beverages.

Except then I acknowledge how seemingly impossible that would be. Either I’d have to run away and have guilt over that, or hire a babysitter and home health. Neither of which is desirable and the latter is out of my budget, I can barely afford the two middle-schoolers that watch Ian and Katherine on the rare occasion we have to resort to that. Fortunately, they are homeschool kids so even during the school year we can call on them if needed, but it is always a last resort.

So I told my friend the office manager I was sitting on that beach in my mind as often as possible, and then she made sure that I had as much time as I wanted to myself yesterday. I am grateful for that. I struck the balance between to-do-list and running away and gave myself a couple solid hours of quiet me time.

Anyway, so there’s that question. I have thought immensley on.

The short answer is: what I’m doing now, just a little less of it, a couple hours a week less should be enough, but with proper external care- so adequate trades too.

The long answer started when I thought about the offered office admin position at the clinic. I can do it, I’m not a 30 year seasoned vet, but I get the complexities and processes. Yet, I find myself holding my breath often, and I really have to focus because it isn’t second nature for me. Between dyslexia compensation mechanisms, and easily distracted, I find I have to spend most of the day making myself focus. It’s just like when I was Activities Director. It’s not a bad job and the job itself isn’t that stressful, but me doing the job is.

Then I thought about things I like and things I don’t like. It was a long list of both. Ultimately, the important likes were making pretty/adding beauty to the world and helping people. Those two give me big feel good warm fuzzies. Yet, I am beginning to see that the former is a result of the latter, and also that the way I help people can be a much wider array of ways. So in a way my current role is a good reflection of that.

I also acknowledged that there are other jobs that could accomplish the same things, but most of them would require more education, and that is out of reach at this point in time. Others, I’m not sure they would be any kind of pay raise or reduction in labor, so there’s no hurry to switch.

I also felt that I have had many people over time acknowledge my talent in a variety of ways: being called a healer, being told I’m compassionate, being told I’m gifted, and thousands of “best massage in my life”.

It’s just in me and I’m okay with that.

It’s so much there, that massage is the one thing I’m so profeccient at, that I don’t really have to think about it. My mind can be on a million things and people never notice unless I say something about it. I can carry on conversations while working my magic. I don’t have to give it one thought.

Yet I do, I still spend vast amounts of time focused on what my hands are doing, pressure, sensations, and billions of repetitions of healing phrases and and Reiki statements. I think about how beautiful some of my clients are, and how kind, caring, strong, and generous other are. I think about all their good qualities to help them reach themselves and heal.

I don’t do it because I have to.

I do it because I want to.

I want to help and make beautiful, and doing what I do, does that for them. I want to be my best self so I’m always striving for more focused, more attentive, more helpful, easier. And to do all of that I focus on what I’m doing even more.

So even though my job is easy enough for me to mentally check out, I remain as present as the client’s conversation allows, most of the time.

Things that bring enjoyment and joy are those that you can focus on fully and completely.

The more attention you give to your now moment the better it feels. And for me, massage and art, are both neck and neck for that place. Those two things have brought me the peace of the moment, more than anything else in my life. When I was in highschool music was a tied third. As an adult I have no time for music, and I’d have to start over being so rusty.  I genuinely love all 3, and currently I’m working in 2 of them successfully.

Anyway, at the long end of my contemplation, I have decided I need to back off slightly and somehow figure out good trades bi-weekly. I’m not giving up on what I love because of injuries, I just need to make certain they don’t happen again. There is a balance and I will find it in time.

For now I’d still love that vacation. I’ll leave the door open that the universe finds a way to make it happen.

May you see you role in this world and love yourself for it. May you have all of the joy inspiring focus you need and may you never have to focus on something you’d rather not. May your skills match the job perfectly and make everything easy for you. May you breathe deep always knowing that you got this, and you’re doing exactly as was intended for you. May you find your way to make the world a more beautiful place and in turn help everyone the same as a drop of water in the ocean. May you always know that you are loved and supported in all that you do, and you have that and more from the divine always.

Om Shanti

Furthermore (after publishing thought):

I am able to focus on massage and art, even when life melts down. I am able to focus on them even when I’m in pain or distress. I am able to focus on them in the midst of everything. I choose to do them because I enjoy them and they help me too. I choose to make the time for them, because they serve me well always, and bonus they help me pay my bills too. They are my gateways to my inner being no matter what else is going on in the world.

I wish that for everyone. May you all find that thing or the things that are gateways to your inner being no matter what is happening in your world. Those are your gifts. Cherish them always.

Om Shanti

Test ride.

It’s no Tesla, but I love my E-Bike.

I was able to accomplish my test ride heading home from work today. I managed the ride in 1 hr and 14 minutes (with 2 stops), and it ended up being just over 14 miles.

As you can see in the images below, I was able to go much faster on the E-Bike, but it was still a very good amount of pedaling. There were a few downhill stretches where my legs and lungs got a break, but on flat terrain I still have to put in part of the effort, and inclines I was doing most of the effort. It really is just a boost.

It was still manageable, considering that I gave up at a little over 8 miles on a traditional manual bike.

As for the route, Google maps was kind enough to provide a bike friendly route with smaller hills than the massive hill on Banister Road- though two of the hills I did ride were not much less. One was very long but not as steep, and the other was equally steep but half as long. Maps even introduced me to a bike path I’d never used. It was a good ride in 60+ degree weather with the sun shining brightly.

As for my battery, I probably over consumed it figuring out how to navigate hills and stoplights, but it still comfortably made it home. Once I get more efficient and have more leg endurance it’ll get less of a power drain, and I could go much further.

I stopped twice. Once to avoid a heavy burst of traffic crossing Ward Parkway, and the second time was to take off my outer most layer to avoid being soggy from sweating. Otherwise I was able to ride straight through. It was nice to be able to ride that far. I’m definitely no marathon competitor, but I’m glad to know my legs are not as gimpy as I thought.

Once I got home, I went ahead and decorated my bike with holiday decor and battery operated led lights. That way if I end up riding before/after dark I’ll be amply visible. It’s not a problem when the sun is up more hours of the day!

Anyway, tomorrow there is a chance of rain, and Anya’s work schedule is very similar to mine, so I’ll drive us both to work at the same time. Wednesday will be my next chance to ride, and honestly after two long rides when I haven’t touched a non-stationary bike for years, I probably should take a day off. I don’t want to overdo it, and this is to help with transportation needs and fuel consumption, so I won’t have to ride every day, just every opportunity that is convient and manageable. If I get 4 or 5 days a week it’ll make up for my gym routine from before May, and accomplish both of the other goals too!

May you have good bikes, good rides, and perfect weather to enjoy. May you have fun figuring out new things. May you always have answers when you need them and the right tools for every situation. May you be patient with yourself, your life challenges, and with well meaning concerned friends. May you know everything will be alright no matter what, and above all may you know that the divine loves and supports you in all that you do.

Om Shanti

Nursing to goals.

I strained my arm again; too many hours of overuse and not nearly enough self care to make up for it. Yet, after lots of work on my own, and even some more with help from Nathan and all the staff at the clinic, it’s on the upswing. Like my shoulder it may take a short bit to clear the hurdle, but I know I will.

It’s funny how logically I have known for 15 years that it is possible to injure oneself with repetitive actions, but apparently I didn’t have a full understanding in terms of my work and my self care routine. The work continued and I was getting my massages, but my self care in the evenings disappeared with familial adjustments these last few months. I didn’t keep track of time elapsed well because I have been functioning day to day, moment to moment. Yet my arm hit a wall, and simply gave up, which I’m now going to have to nurse for a while to repair damage done.

So, I now sit waiting for my daughter to come out of her new job, and saw a man struggling to load groceries onto a bike for a cold ride home this very fall evening. I realized he was not prepared for such an endeavor. His bike had no baskets and it seemed he struggled to find a balance between the two sides of the handle bars, and this isn’t weather anyone riding for fun would typically choose. It was clear that his lack of understanding was partially his upbringing, education and awareness, and partially the aspect of having to do something he’d probably rather not. It was an unpleasant combo.

I’m glad I’m able to avoid that scenario. I’m grateful I’m able to choose when, where, and what weather I ride a bicycle in. I’m also grateful that I have a vehicle to handle cold and wet, fall and winter weather, safely and comfortably. I have choices in this matter and it feels good to know that.

Yet, I immediately thought of English and Irish peoples who still to this day ride bicycles miles upon miles for all sorts of needs. They ride rain or shine, from town to town to run their errands and go to work. It just is the way they were raised. It’s part of their culture. The same is true for people from Portland or even like my brother on the east coast. Some people just know that it is a safe environmentally friendly choice of transportation, which if you are prepared and have proper equipment can also be quite enjoyable.

I missed that as a kid, and realized that as I contemplated my upbringing.

I was aware that bicycles could be ridden long distances because my brother would disappear for what seemed as hours on end to ride his bicycle. But I was a tiny baby and then toddler when he was riding. I had no real concept of time or distance. By the time I was old enough to figure that out I was left with family that thought bicycles were more for occasional recreation, rather than exercise or any other kind of daily routine. There was no incentive to invest on that vehicle, it was slower and could not carry lots of weight or passengers, it didn’t make the cut, so a plain and basic bike was my tool to learn the experience of bicycling. It was far from a full experience of all that word can mean. I now have a greater awareness, but at this point I lack the endurance to to use it as transportation for any distance. I’m willing to change that, but it isn’t something I can do overnight.

I am contemplating getting a bike I found on Amazon, maybe by next spring. I’ll put a pic below. It is an electric optional bike, where I can pedal as normal or start the motor and let it do the work. I think it would be helpful in building my endurance and beginning to commute to work by pedal power. See I haven’t been on a bicycle at all in maybe 4 years, and the last time I did ride regularly it was on relatively flat terrain. We would ride with Ian in the pull-along bubble, but we were on bike paths around Riverside and it was very flat and very smooth. Even then my distance was limited. So contemplating my 8.5 mile commute which has several very big hills is a bit daunting. I want to, and I want to get good at biking, but the process seems a bit much to handle. The electric bike would take the daunting out, as long as I stayed motivated to do as much as I could on a given day. I don’t know, maybe it’s just another variation on pushing myself too hard. But, it seems like it would solve both a transportation issue we are having with only one reliable vehicle, and also solve part of my self care puzzle by reintroducing exercise to my daily routine post dialysis interventions. It’s at least worth the attempt and a good bike is never a bad thing.

I guess what I’m saying is that my shoulder, and the biking picture, both are an analogy of the whole picture of life. We only know or understand something fully from the experiences we’ve had, and can only guess at what something is like until we have first hand knowledge. Sometimes we take risks because of that limited knowledge, and sometimes those risks end up hurting us or someone we are close to. It’s not something we should beat ourselves up over, but it is a learning lesson that can help future decisions.

I have now painfully learned that injury can happen whether it’s a singular intense incident or a chain reaction of several minimal ones. And I’m describing it to you with the best my words hold, knowing that you don’t fully comprehend the weight of that, with the core of your being, until it has happened to you. We can never judge another’s experience because we were not in their shoes, but likewise we need to estimate our own limits better knowing that we don’t really know. It leaves less risk, less hurt, but keeps us safer in general.

We can never know the fullness of anything until we have experienced it, but knowing what we do know and knowing that our perspective is limited, can sometimes help us avoid pitfalls of life. Be kind to yourself and others when estimations fail, because we’ve all been there and done that in some way, shape, or form. Healing is possible, and sometimes it requires asking for help. For me right now, I’m past the worst of the arm injury and slowly recuperating, but I still know it is a symptom of a bigger picture needing addressed. I spoke with my friend the office manager about schedule adjustments to attempt to enable self care at work. Beyond that I am still grasping at straws, and don’t know who to ask for what yet. I know I need help, but I just don’t know what to ask for, or who can provide it once I figure that out. Maybe a few more days will bring clarity. For now I continue, moment to moment, day by day, because it’s how I’ve gotten through all of this.

May you understand your needs and what to ask for. May you see where your knowledge is limited and safely estimate you own personal limits. May you have adequate time and space to care for yourself so that you can continue to care for others. May you know that you have everything you need and it’s a simple question away. Above all may you know that the divine loves and supports you in all that you do.

Om Shanti

The bike I’m working towards: