Month: December 2015

HOLIDAY QUOTES TO ENCOURAGE AND INSPIRE

HOLIDAY QUOTES TO ENCOURAGE AND INSPIRE

It’s not surprising to me that so many people love quotes and holiday quotes are a perfect way to share the season. The very best quotes hold a gem of truth that when reflected upon shines a light upon our path and nourishes our soul. Wisdom is simple. Truth is clear. We feel it. It resonates. This holiday season, you may wish to take a few moments to examine these jewels and/or share them with others. Happy Holidays! Dorothy


 

“The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched. They must be felt with the heart. Wishing you happiness.”      – Helen Keller


1-1-12208338_846360218814050_4263233612521796578_n


May we learn to open in love
so all the doors and windows
of our bodies swing wide
on their rusty hinges.
May we learn to give ourselves with both hands,
to lift each other on our shoulders,
to carry one another along.
May holiness move in us
so we pay attention to its small voice
and honor its light in each other.”
Dawna Markova


Perfect holiday quotes for the busy woman…

Tara Brach quote


“I define connection as the energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard, and valued; when they can give and receive without judgment; and when they derive sustenance and strength from the relationship.”
― Brené Brown


Corrie Ten Boom quote


“Remove the veils so that I might see what is really happening here and not be intoxicated by my stories and fears.” Elizabeth Lesser


Alice Walker Quote


In the end, though, maybe we must all give up trying to pay back the people in this world who sustain our lives. In the end, maybe it’s wiser to surrender before the miraculous scope of human generosity and to just keep saying thank you, forever and sincerely, for as long as we have voices.” Elizabeth Gilbert


“Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow.” Melody Beattie


Try to be a rainbow in someone’s cloud.” — Maya Angelou


“One of the most calming and powerful actions you can do to intervene in a stormy world is to stand up and show your soul. Struggling souls catch light from other souls who are fully lit and willing to show it.”
― Clarissa Pinkola Estés


“When we give cheerfully and accept gratefully, everyone is blessed.” ― Maya Angelou


“Laughter is a sunbeam of the soul.”
― Thomas Mann


“Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.”
― Dr. Seuss


Hold on to what is good
even if it is a handful of earth.
Hold on to what you believe
even if it is
a tree which stands by itself.
Hold on to what you must do
even if it is
along way from here,
Hold on to life even when
it is easier to let go.
Hold on to my hand even when
I have gone away from you.
Nancy Wood, Many Winters


Depression – The Masks We Wear and How to Remove Recognize Them

Depression – The Masks We Wear and How to Remove Recognize Them

depression
ARTIST: Lance Johnson
Click on image to visit website.

Depression is often characterized as a deep sense of hopelessness. It typically arises after a devastating rejection, disappointment or loss. I described a little of my experience with depression in my recent posts,  Living Under the Cloud and  A Crack in the Night Sky. Depression, however, set down its roots within me in childhood when I was doing my best to cope with a world that was far more complex than I was equipped to handle.

What I am beginning to understand and wish to share with you, is that while depression can be an insidious state of mind that sets up housekeeping within us, it is useful to also see it as a mask. It is not who we are, but rather a lens through which we live and view our lives.  I believe, that if the mask went on, it can be taken off. It just may take a broader approach and a little more work than we heretofore have understood.

One of the dangers of modern medicine is the conviction that medication is the best and most expedient solution to a majority of ailments.  While it may be expedient, and provide some sort of relief, it may not always be a cure. Modern medicine has done wonders for many illnesses. It has also sidelined solutions for many others. We’ve become a quick fix society that doesn’t understand the need to dig deeper for healing.  Science and medicine continue to narrow their focus, to specialize and fine tune. Drug companies continue to come up with medications to treat the most popular illnesses. Depression is one of those popular illnesses.  What I believe is needed in spades is a broader approach. Specializations can’t see the forest for the tress.  Medication for depression is too often a band-aid approach.

In order to effectively treat and heal depression, particularly chronic depression, it is absolutely necessary to listen to and treat the whole body. Depression is classified by clinicians as a “mood disorder.” This “mood disorder” is the mask. Getting to what lies beneath is more of a challenge. It is my conviction that those who suffer must be shown how to step back from themselves and the labels  to learn to see themselves differently. Stepping back creates the space that can allow in new ideas, new treatments, new methodologies, new understandings of what it means to heal, what it means not only to survive, but to thrive.

Depression was not well understood when I sought help in the 1970’s. It took a decade or more for science to hand me antidepressants and therapy as a solution. It was a God send for me at the time, but it was not a permanent solution. A decade later I was not rid of depression, as my physicians and therapists told me I would be.  At that time psychiatrists were the only medical professionals authorized to prescribe  psychotropic drugs and from whom I received my first explanation as to how they worked.  My doctor told me that antidepressants would “ jump start the synapses in my brain and once mine would eventually begin to work again without help.”  I understood enough about jumping cars to understand the concept and it sounded plausible. What I didn’t think about, nor did he seem to be concerned with, was why was the battery draining and what would keep it from becoming depleted again.

After several relapses and futile attempts to go off antidepressants I was then told by therapists and physicians to just accept that my body was not going to do what it needed to do. They encouraged me to look at my condition as one similar to diabetes, a condition that could be managed with medication.  I had no choice but to accept the sentence I was given, but I never liked it.

I wasn’t convinced that it was quite that simple, although I had not yet found an alternative answer, nor did I even understand the nature of the problem.  Medication and therapy were the only options I was given and I relied on them to get me through the child rearing years.  It was not easy. In fact, while I functioned, and even well at times I felt almost “normal”, I lived under a cloud that threatened to pour at any moment.  Therapy was more of a crutch than a cure and I tried a wide variety of therapies and therapists over the years.

I have functioned, more or less, throughout my life with one hand tied behind my back, and I am fairly certain that there are plenty of people just like me who are doing the same thing. Whether the rope that keeps us bound is depression, anxiety, fear, narcissism, PTSD, or any other mental or emotional condition, I do not now believe that it is always in our best interest to ride the waves in a boat designed by drug manufacturers and over specialized physicians.  Their perspective is far too narrow and has become far too complacent.

Those of us who are riding the waves owe it to ourselves and other sufferers to push the edges of our condition, to challenge the status quo, to do more than just survive. We owe it to ourselves to dig deeper, to try new avenues, to ask hard questions and to accept and love ourselves through it all.

Mental and emotional illness, is more accepted now than it was fifty years ago. If I had been born just twenty-five years earlier I might have spent a good portion of my life in a mental institution undergoing shock treatment. Before that I might have been sequestered behind bars. I am grateful for what was available to me and the relief it did offer. However, I think we can do better. I believe we can work toward acceptance and understanding in a way that doesn’t simply pat the suffering individual on the head and send them home with a pill and a therapist. Mental health issues are more accepted, but they still make us uncomfortable.  We don’t understand them and they frightened us. We fear what we don’t understand. We marginalize what we fear.

All you have to do is look at the state of mental health treatment in this country to see our fear and disregard for the suffering.  Public institutions are underfunded and understaffed. Research is funded more often by drug companies than independent research.  The mentally ill too often end up wandering the streets or end up behind bars.  For those who manage to function more or less normally, current treatments are not often healing treatments.

Depression and anxiety have plagued me most of my life.  Pain is a powerful motivator and it has been the  impetus behind my never-ending quest for understanding. It has driven me to question, research, study, contemplate and experiment, not only to find relief for myself, but to find true healing for all who suffer from this painful, life altering condition. In the process I have amassed an enormous amount of experience and knowledge on the subject. I have seen the commonalities between myself and those I’ve tried to help. The threads that weave us together are the threads that can set us free.  As we untangle these threads we loosen the mask  and the painful pressure beneath is relieved.

As I continue this backward glance at my own struggle with depression and the effect its had on my life, I hope to reach into my knowledge and experience and pull out the most important threads required for healing.  One by one, I hope to offer what insights I am able to offer, not only on the healing process but on mental health treatment in the twenty-first century.

YOU MAY ALSO ENJOY

THE MASKS WE WEAR

WHEN PLANS CHANGE, AND THEY ALWAYS DO!

WOMEN STYLIN’ AT EVERY AGE

 

THE MOST COMFORTABLE PJs I’VE EVER WORN! COOL-jams!

THE MOST COMFORTABLE PJs I’VE EVER WORN! COOL-jams!

I was recently invited to try Cool-Jams – wicking sleepwear – ideal for our up and down body temperature. Perfect not only for the menopausal years but also before and after! Little did I know that I would fall in love with these jammies. I don’t know about you, but I have to feel “just right” in my pjs.  In fact, I have a drawer full of sleep apparel of all varieties that I keep just because I spent money on them, but almost never wear. They’re either too hot, too cold, too tight, too itchy, too something! I have one or two favorites at any given time. NOW, I have a new favorite!

wicking jams for menopausal womenI suffered through night sweats before I even knew they were night sweats – in my forties. Menopause came around and I had other issues, mostly I never slept! The post menopause years I find I’m not one minute, ice-cold the next. That’s what I like about Cool-Jams. They work to keep your body temperature even. I can tell you what I read on their website about how this works, but you might want to explore yourself. Suffice it to say they have developed some miracle fabric that is incredibly comfortable. I’m not just saying that. When I finish this post I’m going to order a second pair.

To make matters even better Cool-jams has an amazing selection. They even have menswear! I just noticed today that they now have bedding! (Trust me there are men who suffer from hot flashes as they age when their hormone levels go wacky for various reasons. They just don’t talk about things the way we do. So you may want to buy your guy some for Xmas.)

I’m not going to model mine for you. 🙂 But, here’s the one I have. Trust me she looks much better than I do! But, I seriously don’t care because I feel just as attractive in mine!Cool Jams wicking pajamas

 

 

SOFTEST, MOST EFFECTIVE WICKING SLEEP WEAR ON THE PLANET

Reflect on Peace – Peace Quotes

Reflect on Peace – Peace Quotes

"Snowbird" by Catherine McClung
“Snowbird” by Catherine Mc Clung, Michigan.

There is no time left for anything but to make peacework a dimension of our every waking activity.
Elise Boulding

Better than a thousand hollow words is one word that brings peace.
Buddha

Peace is the only battle worth waging.
Albert Camus

What can you do to promote world peace? Go home and love your family.
Mother Teresa

Peace cannot be kept by force. It can only be achieved by understanding.
Albert Einstein

But peace does not rest in the charters and covenants alone. It lies in the hearts and minds of all people. So let us not rest all our hopes on parchment and on paper, let us strive to build peace, a desire for peace, a willingness to work for peace in the hearts and minds of all of our people. I believe that we can. I believe the problems of human destiny are not beyond the reach of human beings.
John F. Kennedy

One day we must come to see that peace is not merely a distant goal that we seek, but that it is a means by which we arrive at that goal. We must pursue peaceful ends through peaceful means.
Martin Luther King, Jr.


If there is to be peace in the world,
There must be peace in the nations.

If there is to be peace in the nations,
There must be peace in the cities.

If there is to be peace in the cities,
There must be peace between neighbors.

If there is to be peace between neighbors,
There must be peace in the home.

If there is to be peace in the home,
There must be peace in the heart.
Lao Tzu

If everyone demanded peace instead of another television set, then there’d be peace.
John Lennon

May you be filled with loving kindness.
May you be well.
May you be peaceful and at ease.
May you be happy.
Ancient – Tibetan Buddhist – Meditation

Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called the children of God.
Matthew, V:9

Peace may sound simple – one beautiful word – but it requires everything we have, every quality, every strength, every dream, every high ideal.
Yehudi Menuhin

It isn’t enough to talk about peace. One must believe in it. And it isn’t enough to believe in it. One must work at it.
Eleanor Roosevelt

I was once asked why I don’t participate in anti-war demonstrations. I said that I will never do that, but as soon as you have a pro-peace rally, I’ll be there.
Mother Theresa

If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.
Mother Theresa 

We, Veteran’s for Peace, view peace as a positively active and creative process which requires courage, commitment, endurance, vigilance, and integrity. Peace is a struggle toward unity, and it is characterized by an absence of violence in all its forms, including discrimination based on gender, age, race, religion, social and economic status, ethnicity, and sexual orientation. Those who labor for peace are called peacemakers because they tirelessly pursue nonviolent solutions, work for economic and social justice, celebrate diversity, and strive to build relationships between adversaries through education, conflict mediation, and humanitarian relief. We recognize that peace is both a means and end simultaneously, and that it is never finally or fully achieved. This is because change and growth require some degree of tension or conflict. Historically, such conflict has provided the impetus for military solutions. Thus we, Veteran’s for Peace, strongly believe that the greatest obstacle to peace is militarism with its reliance on violence and war. We further believe that peacekeeping action should only be accomplished by a legitimate international body.
Committee to Define Peace, Veterans for Peace

Peace is always beautiful.
Walt Whitman

You cannot find peace by avoiding life.
― Virginia Woolf

Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing
and rightdoing there is a field.
I’ll meet you there.

When the soul lies down in that grass
the world is too full to talk about.
Rumi

When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know peace.
Jimi Hendrix

God can’t give us peace and happiness apart from Himself because there is no such thing.
C.S. Lewis

Deep peace I breathe into you, O weariness, here:
O ache, here!
Deep peace, a soft white dove to You;
Deep peace, a quiet rain to you;
Deep peace, an ebbing wave to you!
Deep peace, red wind of the east from you;
Deep peace, grey wind of the west to You;
Deep peace, dark wind of the north from you;
Deep peace, blue wind of the south to you!
Deep peace, pure red of the flame to you;
Deep peace, pure white of the moon to you;
Deep peace, pure green of the grass to you;
Deep peace, pure brown of the earth to you;
Deep peace, pure grey of the dew to you,
Deep peace, pure blue of the sky to you!
Deep peace of the running wave to you,
Deep peace of the flowing air to you,
Deep peace of the quiet earth to you,
Deep peace of the sleeping stones to you!
Deep peace of the Yellow Shepherd to you,
Deep peace of the Wandering Shepherdess to you,
Deep peace of the Flock of Stars to you,
Deep peace from the Son of Peace to you,
Deep peace from the heart of Mary to you,
And from Briget of the Mantle
Deep peace, deep peace!
And with the kindness too of the Haughty Father
Peace!
In the name of the Three who are One,
Peace!
And by the will of the King of the Elements,
Peace! Peace!
The Dominion of Dreams : Under a Dark Star – Fiona Macleod – 1895

The Lord bless thee,

and keep thee: The Lord

make his face shine upon

thee, and be gracious upon

thee: The Lord lift up his

countenance upon thee

and give thee peace.

Numbers 6:24-26