Happy Holidays!!



This past week was a holy week for both the Christians and Jewish people.  While both holidays are connected, as the Last Supper is said to have taken place at Passover, the holidays are fundamentally different.

Someone once explained to me their belief is that  Easter seems to be a celebration through suffering whereas Passover is a celebration despite suffering.

Suffering is something people with chronic conditions know a lot about.  So while we all are celebrating the holidays this week, let’s hope that as our ancestors before us triumphed over suffering, we too will be able to move forward despite our limitations.

Happy holidays to all!!


Water, water everywhere!



This is where I was yesterday afternoon…Oak Beach, NY.  While this water is definitely not the prettiest or the bluest, to me it was a lifesaver.  I sent out an SOS yesterday to a friend and needed to get out of my apartment and change my scenery.

Since a week ago, I have been down and just out of sorts.  It all started when I met a friend of mine for lunch at the coffee shop on the corner.  The routine usually is my friend will pick me up in front of my apt, drop me at the front of the restaurant and then go find a parking spot.  The same routine is usually done in reverse on the way home, but this time I wanted to try something new.  I wanted to see if I’ve made any progress with my physical stamina and when it was time to go home, after a very nice lunch, I said I’m going to walk home.

Now to anyone else but me, this would seem like a normal sentence, but to me this was monumental.  The restaurant is on my corner, my building is in the middle of the block, piece of cake you say!  NOT.

I walked very, very slowly, even cut some steps out by walking in the middle of the street, but by the time I got to my apartment, my body was shaking, my legs felt like jelly and they couldn’t support my body weight.  To bed I went and in bed I stayed for the rest of the day.

Now was this worth, definitely not in hindsight, but I was hoping for a much different body response and the one I got really put me in a downward spiral.  How could I not have progressed any since last spring?  Will it be 10 more years before I am physically able to walk to my corner?  What goes on in my body that causes this and why can’t any medical doctor figure this out?

So since this incident, I just have been completely out of sorts and just uninspired to try to do anything because I was afraid of getting the same response.  But the weather has been so beautiful these last few days and yesterday I just couldn’t take it any more and needed to be by water.  So I was lucky that my friend was available and was able to spend the afternoon with me, surrounded by nature and peace and quiet.

It did me a world of good and I came back home in a much better mental state.  Although I am tired today, because I was out for many more hours than I usually venture out, the physical tiredness is worth it today because I feel good mentally and I know my spirit and determination are back.

Today, I wish I was able to do more than gaze out my window and view the life outside, but I am content again and at peace with myself and that’s all that matters to me this afternoon.

Happy Birthday to You


The first week of April used to be a very a happy time for me.  I had 4 birthdays in a row of people in my life, but now 3 of these people are gone.  2 were family by blood (cousin and father) and 1 was a dear friend I grew up with and stayed friends with.  I’m sorry to say my cousin and I didn’t have a good relationship when she past, but my friend and my dad were very much in my every day life .  I lost both of them within a few months of each other and neither died an easy painless death.  Both suffered for a long time before the end came.

My mom and I are going to visit my dad today and it’s always a solemn day.  We know he is in a better place, but it would be nice to wish him Happy Birthday in person and tell him the we love him.  I am so glad that I did all that I could for my dad in the last few months he was alive, even though it came at a cost for me as I was very ill when he was slipping away from us.  I have no guilt or any feelings of “what if”.  I did what I could and he knew I was extending myself for him, just like he extended himself for me when he was able to.

My mom and my dad grew up in low to middle class families.  Neither went to college but they both worked very hard to make sure my sister and I were taken care of.  We lived in a very small 2 bedroom house and they gave us the master bedroom and my parents slept on a high riser in the small second bedroom.  They both worked 2 or 3 jobs and didn’t complain about anything.  This was just what you did.  And when I did all that I did for my dad, I had the same mentality.  This is just what you do for someone you love who is dying.

Many people are often riddled with guilt and regrets when a loved one dies and I am lucky that I don’t have those regrets.  Even with my close friend, I talked to her every single day for an hour or more when she was in the hospital for months on end.  I would stay on the phone with her when the nurses where in her room trying to clean her wounds and she would scream in pain.  I was there for her, even though I couldn’t be in the room with her physically, I was there.

So even though this is a sad week, I know they both are together having a good birthday.  My friends parents were also my father’s good friends, so we all knew each other in life and I know they are with each other in death.

I don’t want to say I am rushing the time away until I meet up with them again because I have a lot of things I want to accomplish while I am still alive.  Although I may be slower and tire more easily these days, I still have goals and dreams and I will not give them up, as long as I am able to move forward, even at a snails pace.