Random Acts of "Kindness"

Posts tagged ‘inspiration’

THE VISITOR

I love to hear stories. Especially if they are real. Especially if they have feel good themes. Our world is so negative at the moment, our weather is so snowy and cold — not Spring, that stories that have a good theme or outcome are lovely.

I have two to share. The first concerns a visitor — a spirit — a person from the other side. His passing was a surprise. He was in his 80’s and his health was a challenge. In fact, he was in the hospital when he passed. His condition had improved, he was walking by himself with his walker. He was scheduled to be released the next day. His wife had gone home to shower. With his walker, he went to the bathroom, and upon exiting, he fell, hit his head and passed over.

Of course, his wife felt VERY BAD. She had been with him for the past few days. Walking with him when he got out of bed. Because he had improved, she took the opportunity to go home. Because she wasn’t with him, he also took the opportunity to go HOME.

Of course there were many questions about that accident and they are considering a lawsuit. Meanwhile the wife is puzzled by his fall. Why did he fall? He had his walker, he was scheduled to go home. WHY? The questions continued.

A couple of months passed. She was considering selling their home, moving in with a daughter. She also had aged and her health wasn’t that good. She was sitting in the chair in her bedroom when the scent of Irish Spring soap filled the room. Her husband ALWAYS used that soap.

She called his name. Then asked what happened? “What caused you to fall?” AND SHE RECEIVED HIS ANSWER. (I didn’t ask if she “heard” it or if the answer came into her mind.) He said that his robe got caught under the wheel of the walker and he fell backwards, hitting his head. I didn’t think of asking if they had a longer conversation. I did tell her that often the person who is passing takes advantage of the opportunity when their loved one isn’t there.

It would have been easier to use their names in the story. I know her well and decided to protect their privacy. Writing about her experience has provoked a few questions. I want to hear more of the story.

The second story is also an answer to a question. My daughter was driving and was puzzled about a story she was writing. There was a problem and she couldn’t think of the solution. While her mind was occupied by the traffic, the solution to the writing problem flashed in her mind. She thought I would enjoy her story.

I have mentioned that I often send questions up — and receive the answer. It doesn’t matter if the answer flashes in my mind, or is heard from another person or on the radio or television.

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SCARED

It didn’t make any sense! Why should I be afraid to pick up a paint brush? Buy paint and canvas? Try to paint a picture in acrylic? Okay, I’ll admit that it has been many years since I have tried to paint a whole picture. I’ve dabbled with paint a couple of times, but not with any purpose or effort. I have a couple of tiny canvasses up. I might have been encouraging my grandchildren to paint. I really don’t remember.

Hanging on the walls –I have quite a few large canvases that remind me that I was able to actually paint a picture that I was proud of. Just last week I unearthed a satchel that held many books that contained painting ideas that I brought to life. So why was I frightened? It wasn’t as if someone had asked me to do a painting. I didn’t have a job that offered money for a finished work of art. I wasn’t planning on entering an art show. There was no pressure to put paint on canvas. Except my family kept encouraging me to paint again. Was I afraid I would let them or myself down?

Since we closed up the camper for the fall, channel 20 quit broadcasting programs that I enjoyed — I have discovered another PBS station that runs programs by five different artists five days a week. When I discovered I was able to paint many years ago, I watched Bill Alexander and his mighty brush. Many of the ways I painted trees and mountains came from his ideas. I painted in oil. These artists use a mixture of mediums — oil, acrylic, mixed. Their techniques are mixed also. I have watched — trying to learn, inspire.

My husband has emphysema and there is an odor to oil and the solvent used to clean brushes, etc. I thought it would be better to paint in Acrylic, it was fast drying and odorless. The texture of the paint is different. I’ve learned that Acrylic is available not only in tubes but also in liquid. It can be used similar to watercolor. As if I wasn’t confused enough! Although I played with watercolors a couple of times — I’m not skilled. Nor do I have the talent for drawing. When I painted in oil, I was surprised that the paintings I tried, turned out as well they did.

I finally gave in — I saw a mountain and waterfall scene that I thought I would try. I bought a large canvas, paints — and began. I painted a mountain that I wasn’t unhappy with. That is as far as I got that day. The next weekend, canvas on an easel, water in containers, brushes out — plans changed. Instead of trees and a waterfall — rough ocean water came into being with a couple of waves. The small mountains became more imposing. My sky was already in motion — clouds racing. ROUGH WATER was born. Finished? I’m not sure. It still needs to be signed.

THE TUB

We have an old fashioned claw foot tub in our upstairs bathroom. Over the years I have enjoyed many hours soaking in it. Sadly I haven’t been able to get in it for years. How many? I really have no idea. I don’t know if I was able to enjoy a bath when I had the ulcer on my leg. I know since it has healed I haven’t been in it. Then there is my weight, and the inner tube where my tummy used to be. Lets not forget that my knees are now a problem — if I get down on the floor, getting back up is a challenge.

So I’m sure you are wondering why I’m writing a thought ramble on the tub. It was a combination of circumstances. First I was home alone and my knees were hurting. I thought it would be an excellent idea to soak in the tub. Evidently I wasn’t thinking. I decided that I would climb in fully dressed and see if I could get myself back out.

I DIDN’T take our house phone or my cell phone in to the bathroom with me. I knew my husband would probably call and would expect me to answer the phone. OOPS! I had accidentally washed his cell phone and he needed to get the new one connected. He was at the store working on that issue.

I used our grandchildren’s step to help me get into the tub and sat down with a bang. I was VERY comfortable sitting in the DRY TUB. But I had to get out. I tried pushing my body up using my feet. My slipper socks prevented my feet from getting traction. No problem, I took the socks off. But it didn’t help. I slowly raised my back up to the top of the tub but not high enough to help. Next brilliant idea! I threw my leg over the side. Now What? — leg dangling over the side didn’t help. Thankfully I was able to get the leg back into the tub.

I was VERY COMFORTABLE resting with my back against the back of the tub. I could have sat there until someone came home. But if the phone rang, I couldn’t answer it and someone would be worried. I would get a royal bawling out. My next brilliant idea actually worked. I pulled the little step into the tub. Lifted my butt onto it and got out of the tub. I might actually try that again — later. I would like to loose a few more pounds first or get more flexibility into my legs.

NOTES

Two phones calls arrived on Sunday. The first was from a friend sharing the sad news that her sister had passed. It was not expected. She hadn’t been ill — in the hospital for some procedure. The second was from my husband’s older brother. We knew he had lung cancer, we didn’t know that the cancer had spread to his other lung and he didn’t plan to get more treatment.

I decided to send my book JOURNEY WITH ME to them. The stories in the book were written when my father first passed over to the other side. I was just beginning to recognize “help” from the other side. Since I was writing my first book TO PAP, WITH LOVE — I became VERY AWARE of the fact that I had an unseen editor. Writing the book was challenging on two fronts. The first was in remembering the events that occurred in the right order. For the most part I hadn’t kept a journal during my father’s illness. Sometimes I wrote a few notes which were a great help but most of the events relied on my memory. The second front involved “my editors.” I had TROUBLE in the writing — sentences disappeared, computer shut off, printing a hard copy became impossible at times. I don’t know if I kept notes on all the fun I had writing and rewriting the book. When I finally finished I tried without success to get a publisher. I ended up publishing the book myself through IUNIVERSE — an online publishing company that only prints books to order.

The great thing about publishing through IUNIVERSE was not only the affordability and the professional help, but the books are still available. Not only TO PAP, WITH LOVE but also JOURNEY WITH ME from Amazon. I found TO PAP, WITH LOVE quickly — JOURNEY WITH ME was harder. I needed to add the author’s name to the search.

Before I mailed JOURNEY, I decided to read some of the stories I had included. Some were very familiar. I was in the process of taking a class in creative writing at our city college. Some of the stories were written for the class. Others came from incidents that I included in TO PAP, expanded into more of a story. Others were brand new — no longer in my memory. I realized that if I wanted to get the books in the mail, I needed to stop reading and mail. I decided to read the last stories before mailing the books. TaDum TaDum TaDum included my husband’s second cancer surgery. I included a sentence that stated I knew why he needed chemo again because of a dream I had. ?????? What dream? What message? CONFUSED!

Since the writing was at the end of JOURNEY I knew the timeline it might have come from. For many years I have kept a daily engagement calendar. I guessed on the date of the dream and thankfully found a tiny note. Because there was a long time frame from the discovery of the cancer and the removal, there was more time for the cancer to spread. I referred to it in my notes as weeds. There was also a note from the dream on eating more vegetarian meals to help control my weight.

I was glad that I found the note on the dream. It would have bothered me. I have to admit that I’m still not good on taking notes. I either think I will remember (WRONG) or hide them from myself. I thought that discovering the importance from notes might make me more apt to take them, but the reality is that it won’t.

OLDER

I’m sure that something is going on. A message might be trying to get through but it isn’t clear. I haven’t the foggiest idea what, if anything, I’m supposed to do. Okay, have I confused you? Just what is it that I’m grumbling about?

In my morning readings I’m reminded “Trust God’s promises to you.” Abraham is popping up often. On the news — radio — TV — I’m reminded of people in their 100’s that are accomplishing amazing things. Recently on TV a 98 year old woman was featured playing Amazing Grace on a piano on the Grand Old Opera stage. She learned how to play as a girl, played for her classmates, got scared and NEVER performed in public again. I don’t know what program I was watching when I saw it. She was AMAZING — not only playing the notes but adding runs and other enhancements. Of course she received a standing ovation.

All of the people who are appearing haven’t reached their 100 birthday. I finished exercising one morning and turned the television back to a normal channel in order to listen to Jerry Lewis on his 91st birthday exercising his wit.

I get it! Age is not a factor in what a person can accomplish. My question is: “What am I supposed to do?” And of course there is no reply. Not that “I” hear — but since information comes to me in many different forms — I would think that I would get a hint of the task at hand. Instead I’m reminded that Angels are Playmates and Confidants or how important my family is to me.

And I agree to both of those statements but they don’t give me a hint as to the task at hand. Now I will admit that if I don’t have a thought ramble ready to publish my life becomes more complicated. Or I get hit on the head. Stuff still avalanches out of our freezer, sometimes falling on the floor, sometimes hitting me on the head or smashing on my feet — especially when I’m not wearing shoes.

So is the answer to my question that I’m just supposed to stay available to our family and make sure I have something written to publish once a week? I wish I could write that I have lots of energy and am accomplishing wonders in our house but I don’t like to lie. The truth is that the past few weeks have seen my lazy side. I’m exercising a little in the morning, a little in the evening. I’m walking Robin — it would be great to say 10,000 steps a day but I have trouble reaching 6,000. I could blame it on my knees — they don’t like the cold or the damp. For the most part I’m cooking — but if I can make something that lasts for a second meal I don’t mind.

Stay tuned — if I receive an answer, I’ll share.

AN UN-ORDINARY DAY

The day began normally enough, except I overslept. In fact I arose an hour later than normal which put everything behind. I didn’t mind too much when I saw the outside temperature was in the teens. Robin didn’t want to get up either. If I’m honest, I didn’t push her. We finally went outside to SUNSHINE two hours later than normal.

I opened my bible to Sirach 23:19. “Gorge not yourself, lest you give offense.” No problem, I planned to eat breakfast at home. And God must have laughed. When my husband got up, (late also), he invited me out to breakfast saying that he would pay. Coat on! Let’s go!

And so began a not ordinary day. We frequent a restaurant where my husband LOVES their biscuits and gravy. The woman who is normally found at the cash register looked horrible. I soon learned why. Her 39 year old son died in January from a heart attack. Thankfully except for miscarriages, I haven’t had that experience but I can imagine that it would be extremely hard to lose a child – no matter the age. As a parent, we are supposed to outlive our children.

I really didn’t know what to say other than the normal “I’m so sorry.” EXCEPT — “I walk to a different drummer.” I had to tell her a very short story of “Pap and The Pancake Turner.” She said it helped. She was in my vision at the booth we sat at and she looked very unwell. I thought of printing a copy of the story for her. One thought lead to another. I decided I would give her a copy of my book: Journey With Me. It is a grouping of stories that have made me AWARE of interactions of “my friends in high places” with me.

Needless to say, we returned home so I could get book and sign and deliver. Next stop on my un-ordinary day — we stopped at AT&T to get a smart phone for my husband. He has wanted one for a very long time and it seemed like a good birthday present. Ordinary day EXCEPT a young man was training in the store. I have no idea how old he was — young but I’m not a good judge of age. What I knew for sure was that he was VERY OVERWEIGHT. I tried very hard to KEEP MY BIG MOUTH SHUT. It didn’t happen! I apologized but I had to share my experience of the morning. I mentioned that I walk to a different drummer and since he was there, he must have some friend in high places that wanted me to pass on the message.

Another un-ordinary day!

HIDDEN

Changing calendars, copying important notes (passwords), getting ready for 2017 — I stumbled on two things. First — I saw a lovely picture of my young mother. Sadly she passed over when I was four — I never got to know her. Relatives have told me that I’m like my mother in many ways. I’m sure some of the things I have copied were good. I never found a mother substitute either. My mother remained hidden in the background of my life until my father left me a message that he was fine — on the other side. Of course, I didn’t put one and one together to make two. My father was fine, I didn’t think about my mother or brother or others.

Before my father passed, I visited the cemetery, Queen Of Angels on Wolf Rd. Miraculous things were happening there. People were taking pictures of heaven, rosaries where turning to gold and other unexplained happenings. I visited on more than one occasion — by myself and with a friend. On one occasion my rosary turned to gold (it still is) and the scent of roses filled the air. For the longest time I couldn’t remember the name of the cemetery. I also had trouble remembering the name of the church were I went to Mass in the country. I referred to it as the church in the name of the town. When my husband and I took a trip to South Dakota — the cathedral a short block from our hotel had the same name as the church in the little town. Could I remember? NO! The names where blocked until after my father passed over. Was my mother trying to remain hidden? Now I don’t think that she is the same person as our blessed mother BUT she does share the same name — MARIA! The name in the church in the little town is Our Lady Of Perpetual Help. The cathedral in South Dakota shared the same name.

What brought this on, you may ask. When I saw her picture — I took the time to thank her for ALL the help she provides for me on a regular basis. Did it start when she passed over? I don’t know and does it matter. Sadly our world is in horrible shape. New Year — New TRADGEDIES — the body count grows. North Korea wants to develop a long range missile to target the United States. Isis continues its bloodshed. We will soon have a new president who wants to improve on our nuclear weapons as well as other things.

The second thing that brought this on is I stumbled across a thought ramble titled UNIVERESE WHISPERS. I wrote it in March of last year — a relative had recently passed over and my girls were in from out of town. I was feeling my age. I’m feeling my age TODAY. I told a friend (who is older than me) that I’m tired of feeling 90. She should have warned me.

Part of the thought ramble contained these sentences. “The universe starts with a whisper. If you don’t listen, the whisper turns into a massive holler.” Is our universe yelling? Is anybody paying attention?

Our universe needs our prayers! Hopefully there will be a world to leave to our children.

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