Thursday, June 09, 2011
I did not think I would start the ‘D’s discussing death, but my dear colleague’s dad died yesterday. She sent me a marvelous e-mail thanking me for allowing her the time and freedom to see him complete his journey.
I am certain she would not mind me sharing some of her words, “Dad passed away peacefully today at 4:30 PM in the home of his birth. He left us from the room which was the heart of the home, where he played as a child, his children played, as did his grandchildren and their children.”
As you can tell, she is a remarkable woman and I am blessed to call her a friend.
I am also blessed to call many of you friends. While we have not shared death journeys, we have shared life journeys. We have told each other our hopes and fears. We have asked for guidance with our goals and gratefully accepted advice and appreciation. We have reached out to similar-stage, newbie and oldie Sparkers and found friends at every turn.
It often takes a death to make us realize how precious life is…Here's to being ALIVE! "full of energy and vigor, with a zest for, and interest in life"
L’chaim my friends.
“When being together is more important than what you do, you are with a friend.” - Connie McMartin
Thursday, June 02, 2011
Commitment – “something that takes up time or energy” (Encarta)
How nicely does that sum up the word?
Synonyms: promise, obligation, dedication
Commitment to exercise is my Achilles heel. I’m a ‘naturally’ thin person, so while physical activity helped me reach my goal weight, size and shape, I don’t ‘need’ to work-out to keep out-ward appearances. (It’s amazing how much clothes hide – even ‘small’ clothes.)
But what about the inside? What about the bones that are demineralizing; the muscles and organs (and maybe soul) that are atrophying?
I ‘know’ my ‘inside’ needs exercise – mental and physical; but just like I ‘know’ I’m going to die someday, for some reason I don’t internalize it. Maybe by avoiding, I’m denying and by denying, I’m pretending I will live forever. The funny thing is if I did live forever, I’d be in terrible shape…
I will be ‘wearing’ this marvelous machine called a body for the rest of my days. If I want those days to be ALIVE! "full of energy and vigor, with a zest for, and interest in life", I need to take responsibility. I need to commit to meditate and strength train daily. With my family and friends’ support, I will succeed.
May we Sparkers make a promise to ourselves to become healthier (whatever that may mean); may we remain steadfast in our journeys; and may we treat our goals as life-long contracts.
Tuesday, May 31, 2011
I was going to continue with ‘C’ words on Monday, but what words are appropriate for the American ‘celebration’ of Memorial Day; Carry, Courage, Compensation, Culmination, Cost?
James Martin Davis wrote his 31st op-ed piece for the Omaha World Herald, "Remember families along with war veterans". It is well worth reading and I took the liberty to quote parts of it below.
“Today is the last Monday in May. We call it Memorial Day. It is a day when America pays tribute to those soldiers who were as humble as they were heroic, and whom America asked to accept the fate of eternal loneliness… It is a day of solace when we need to remember their families as well. For them, Memorial Day is not a day of celebration; it is a day of suffering and sadness.”
The fact that the US has been at war for 10 years is heartbreaking to me. I lost my brother during the Vietnam War, so know families are irrevocably damaged by the loss. But more importantly, our families who have members serving today live in fear, not only for their loved ones, but of losing their homes and savings.
Thanks to people like Holly Petraeus (former director of the BBB Military Line program), military families will face less financial crises.
I am heartened she will direct the Office of Servicemember Affairs which opens for business in July.
In addition, “Joining Forces” allows those of us in the US to send a message of simple thanks to our military families.
Here’s my hope some American Sparkers will join me in helping to ‘carry the cost’ our military families face, and send them our thanks – not necessarily today, but later when they might feel forgotten.
Friday, May 27, 2011
Seems like the perfect time to move to the ‘C’s.
Encarta defines choice as “a decision to select one thing, person, or course of action in preference to others”, but it also can be defined as “the best or most desirable part”. Consequence is defined as “something that follows as a result, a logical conclusion or outcome.”
We Sparkers are faced with choices every day, some are automatic, others carefully selected; some are within us and some are outside us; some we ‘control’ and some we don’t.
After waking we:
* get out of bed (or we don’t)
*meditate/exercise (or we don’t)
* eat breakfast (or we don’t)
It took me years to choose “the best or most desirable part” from just the preceding short list. (As an adult I never ate breakfast. I don’t remember the convoluted rationale, but I was amazed when the 2:00 slump ‘magically’ ended.)
If I convince myself I need a few more minutes of sleep, I decide not to meditate. If I decide not to meditate, I decide not to strength train. And if I don’t meditate and/or train in the morning, I don’t do either later in the day.
The 10 second decision I make first thing in the morning sets the pattern for my day. If I chose to RPM (rise, pee and meditate), I hot wax my hands (a reward in itself), sit for a half hour, followed by alternating days of Callanetics & my trainer’s exercises. The consequences – soft, pain-free hands, and a generally calm, energy filled day. So why would I consistently choose to stay in bed? What part of ‘logical conclusion’ didn’t I get?
Choice in itself suggests power. We don’t have to ask permission; we have the ability to make a decision. But what about ‘owning’ our decisions; what about taking up our plan, idea, cause, or practice and using or following it? There’s where the true power lies.
While we may continue to struggle with commitment (next ‘C’ word), may we Sparkers choose the ‘best part’ and ‘own’ our goals, with the result being health-filled journeys.
Thursday, May 26, 2011
I love the serendipity of this site. (Will be one of my ‘S’ words.)
BESTSUSIEYET talked about having ‘blinders on’ when (not) making beneficial choices.
Choice in itself suggests power. We don’t have to ask permission; we have the ability to make a decision… (but I’ll leave that discussion for another blog.)
Encarta defines beneficial as “producing a good or advantageous effect; useful, constructive, positive, valuable”.
The synonyms for beneficial offer us different options, different levels of motivation:
* useful – serving a purpose
* constructive – meant to be helpful
* positive – producing good results, affirmative, assured (more of those wonderful ‘A’ words)
* valuable – having great importance, highly prized, cherished, esteemed
SparkPeople gives us:
* useful information to lose weight, gain strength, sleep better – whatever our goals may be
* constructive suggestions to stay motivated, dig a little deeper, learn more
* positive reinforcement to explore, develop and maintain healthy lifestyles
* valuable growth opportunities, support groups, teams, friendships
When you combine the resources of SparkPeople with our power to choose, they ‘sky’s the limit’.
May we Sparkers use this site to assist us to make useful, constructive, positive and valuable choices as we continue on our healthy journeys.
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