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What I am about to write is true and personal. For several years I watched my mother lie in agony and pain, and I could do absolutely nothing (or so I believed) about it. I felt helpless. She took the strongest pain killers and yet they seemed to do nothing but do more harm. She suffered from rheumatoid arthritis (among other things) that was so bad the circulation stopped in one of her thumbs and an index finger. They first turned blue and then black. Both had to be amputated. All of her joints were so messed up that she could not sit or stand. Her body reminded me of the old circus freak shows. It is bad to say but it was horrible for her to live through.

 

I moved back to care for her. The meds that she took caused all sorts of complications and her autoimmune system began fighting itself-that may sound familiar. This was before she had a stroke. I could tell you some of the most grotesque stories but if you know of someone who has suffered like this, then you already know. It caused me great pain to see her like this and to know I was her caregiver and patient advocate and that she depended on me for everything. I couldn’t make things better—it took a toll on me.

 

I wish I knew then what I know today. Since that time I have cared for other people and watched and learned. I’ve read and discussed things that I never dreamed of back then. What I am about to say is not going to sit well with everyone but this is where reality comes to life—where it meets the pavement so to say.

 

What if I told you that there is something that would have helped my mom, something that would have given her quality of life-in my opinion-and helped her to live on without the complications? It may have even lengthened her life with less pain and again, with quality of life.

 

Stigma was a topic in a recent post. We apply that word to things we don’t usually accept. I live with epilepsy which has been stigmatized during my lifetime-less so of late. Hippies of the 60s were unfairly stigmatized as were those who were categorized in this group whether they were hippies or not. Remember, it only takes one’s perspective to categorize someone. Ok, you get the idea.

 

Some things are acceptable depending on the group of people you are with and some things are never acceptable. I used to think everything was black and white, red or green, purple and yellow, etc. I never thought I could help my mom as each day I watched her face one battle after another and waste away before my eyes. I can’t play the shoulda, coulda, woulda game but there is a chance that I could have helped her.

 

Welcome to the 21st century where it is not taboo to speak of cannabis oil and treatment with cannabis. Sure, there are people who still believe it is off limits and that it is the devil weed but if you had a child who suffered severe tonic-clonic seizures that were not controlled by any other medication… are you going to tell me you will not try cannabis oil that has been proven to help stop or at least slow down seizure activity in some patients? I would do it in a heartbeat! I would get cannabis oil or cannabis in some form for a child, my mom, anyone who is in my care who needs it. I would not hesitate one bit. Before you leave my post, I would like you to read on.

 

We have been fed a bunch of malarkey. I believed for a long time that it was a gateway drug. I need to say that there are those individuals who go on to use “heavier” drugs but truth be told, they were headed in that direction any way. It’s the nature of the beast—think addict and you get the idea.

 

Last year, Georgia passed a law that allowed patients with limited illnesses to possess and use cannabis oil such as a child with uncontrollable epilepsy…HOWEVER, the governor and lawmakers failed to provide a way and means for parents and patients to legally obtain cannabis oil. Ever since then there were certain lawmakers and residents of Georgia that have literally been fighting to get a legal way to get help for these patients. One was via new legislation which has failed at every angle. Number two…people have been traveling out of state to “legally” obtain  cannabis oil but illegally transport it back to Georgia. The governor sternly warned there would be consequences for these actions.

 

  • So, why sign a bill into law that helps those who need treatment but not allow them to get treatment?

 

Well, that’s what everyone here has been asking. Another bill was submitted that added more ailments and provided instate cultivation so that patients could get adequate treatment. It came to light this week that our lovely governor would not sign any instate cultivation bill while he is in office…and he doesn’t leave until 2018/19 so…this is the proverbial rock and a hard place.

 

Ok…onto the last of the story. Since the governor has championed support in the state senate (more like strong-armed), a sufficient bill will not leave committee. There is nothing that can be done for another year and this is only February. Think of how many more people will suffer and die because of this insane approach. I learned today that parents will publically put their lives on the line to transport cannabis oil for their children, loved ones, those who are suffering in order to force the governor’s hand. This will get ugly but how does one tell a parent that they cannot get the treatment the child needs? That’s like have a life-saving drug in the pharmacy out in plain sight but no one can purchase it…

 

Whatever stigma cannabis had in the 70s, 80s, 90s…that stigma needs to go away. My mom would have benefitted from this, both her pain and her arthritis and she would not have had the side effects from the drugs she was given. We allow alcohol to be consumed like it is water as long as you are old enough but cannabis??? Alcohol is so much worse. 

 

I wish I knew then what I know now and let me say that people who refuse to provide treatment to those in need, even those who get in their way, should face stiff consequences—even jail time. FYI, these are my opinions. People are suffering and dying and we are supposed to stand around and watch? No.

 

May your gardens grow with lasting abundance–always! 🙂

 

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Once upon a time in a country far away from me there once was a man who believed in justice for the downtrodden, the repressed and oppressed, the ones who were sick, the outcasts of society, the hungry, and even the rich, the educated, etc. No one was denied entrance because they could not pay or if they didn’t have food. No one was turned away when they were sick. This man had to go out in a boat to get away from the crowds who followed him. Everyone wanted to hear him, to be close, to touch him. Everyone wanted what he was giving even if they didn’t understand his story.

 

He was genuine. He loved rather than judged. He healed rather than run people off. He provided food when there was nothing around. How dare he do these things. People should work for what they receive, right? 🙂

 

If you are a Christian, you profess to know Jesus…the one who came for the weak, the lame, the hungry. He came to heal not just physically and emotionally but spiritually. Did he charge a fee? Oh, come on. Nothing is free. 🙂

 

Jesus was liberal. He was a socialist Jew. He didn’t wait for people to come to him…he went to the people. In fact, he was part of the people. He knew their plight and sufferings.

 

I don’t like to mix religion with politics but I hate to tell people this, there is a candidate that is a lot like Jesus who is running. This man does not stand up and say, I this and I that. He says, WE this and WE that. He doesn’t call attention to himself but to the injustices of the world that WE have caused—the things we have failed to correct.

 

Health care should be a right and not a privilege. Eating should be a right and not a privilege. Our children suffer because they can’t find jobs and some suffer so much debt that they have problems repaying loans after college. The low paying jobs don’t cut it. People can’t get out of the gutter once they are down. It’s like a caste system and that’s not what America is.

 

Minorities are being shamed by some candidates. Some even shout to build a wall to keep people out. What if some of our ancestors had been turned away? There are some who commit smaller infractions of the law and can never get out from the debt it causes them. We need to change our justice system because much of it is corrupt. I have seen it firsthand.

 

Some say this man promises pie in the sky dreams that cannot be reached and I say that if we don’t dream and try to reach, then we need to quit today and give up already. I have watched this man for a year and I have read and watched about everything I could get my hands on of his past. This man I refer to is Bernie Sanders who some call a socialist Jew. 🙂

 

You know…I don’t quite understand why Christians are not flocking to support him. You see the similarities of what Jesus preached. He cares for the lowest of all and yet he is marginalized himself. The media shun him. Others throw stones. He still prevails because his message is the one that needs to be heard. Many of us have been living exactly what he talks about. The Christians I know are either supporting Trump or Cruz so what does that say? Not much but I don’t listen to them. They are lost and I can’t do much about it…I have tried.

 

Jesus was a liberal. He was progressive. He was even radical for his time…and maybe today’s time too. Jesus was a socialist Jew and I am proud to support Bernie Sanders because his platform (which has not changed) is the most closely aligned platform to my views of all of the candidates.

 

He has ignited a fire in young people that began back in 2008. That was when the seeds were planted and today it is time to get serious about our country…income inequality, our responsibilities to our earth (climate change), our place in society as a world leader, and many, many more things. Those seeds have become little shoots that need to be transplanted so they can grow into healthy plants and later, we as a society can harvest the bountiful fruit for our children and descendants.

 

I laughed when I heard Bernie Sanders called a socialist Jew today because it showed me that was exactly how Jesus was viewed by the Pharisees so many years ago. If you haven’t listened to Bernie, he doesn’t go on the attack like other candidates do. He has tried to run a very respectable campaign even through the mud that has been thrown his way. Many people have mocked him and said he wasn’t part of the civil rights movement of the 50s and 60s but he was. I’m sure if you continue to dig you will find something not so becoming of the man but I bet he is the best one running. Many of them lie from day to day or they say ugly things about people. Not Bernie Sanders.

 

Some people talk a good talk but then there are some people who actually walk the walk… I’m with the socialist Jew who isn’t that much of a socialist but I have always had a thing for the underdog. 🙂

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Injustices in the world…I believe we are here to help others. If you knew of a needy family, would you offer aid? If a child was going hungry, would you offer him/her food? We are all humans in this world. Sometimes we are in need.

 

I remember when my youngest was born—two weeks before Christmas. My husband had just lost his job. He had been overseas for Desert Storm and was called back home because I was having such a difficult time with my pregnancy. His employer kept him the 30 days required and got rid of him so we were without insurance, food, everything but we still had a roof over our heads.

 

I remember how humiliating it was to be in need and I couldn’t do anything about it. My eldest child had just begun walking. My mom had a stroke earlier that year–it was an awful year in many ways. I was at my wit’s end and had to participate in the WIC program for my baby. Not to be critical but even my church didn’t offer any aid. I was ashamed of my situation but this isn’t the way it is supposed to be. Government programs exist because there are those in need. There is nothing wrong with participating in these and we should never shame anyone who does.

 

I doubt anyone would fault me for participating in the WIC program especially with a newborn. In fact, it was required that I do so by the hospital in order to be released. But what if it were a family who needed help? Would you grant them this same sentiment? What about refugees who come into this country? Would you turn them away? Would you refuse help after they have been settled? I hope you wouldn’t turn people away.

 

Well, my governor has just ordered all government assistance to end in giving refugees aid. There is a child about 4 years of age.

  • Is this ok with you?
  • It isn’t ok to me.
  • It breaks my heart.

 

There are many of us who welcome refugees into this country because we can empathize with their situation no matter who they are. To me, it doesn’t matter what religion, what color, what race, what anything… What matters is that we do unto others as we would want to be treated. There is no other option to me.

 

There are terrible things being said—hateful things. I have been writing about attitudes for a long time now. It is up to us to reach out and do what is right. I cannot apologize for the way I see things. I do not like politics but I am being forced to get involved though I am only one person. I encourage you to get involved and let your voice be heard. We are to love all people…not just those who we want to be here or those who look like us. Many of us in the US have some European ancestry. Might I say that Europeans are not native to this land. People have become so selfish. That is what I see.

 

Again, I encourage you to get involved…call your legislature, governor, representatives. I hope you will show love to others and not judge everyone by the actions of some. We are all connected.

 

Happy Gardening! May your gardens be filled with an abundance of love. 🙂

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I am not in the habit of saying I will do something and not follow through. When I commit, I mean it but I went back on my word (twice) and I am truly sorry. I bow my head in shame.

 

I have been following Sreejit Poole for a good while..not sure how long..a few years? He has been one of my spiritual guides, if I can call him that, on my journey of life—a type of mentor yet he does not know that (well he knows now if he reads this, lol).

 

He is very talented in so many ways and he did something so special for the month of November on his blog called The Seeker’s Dungeon (link). He had guests post each day about their “walk with intention.” 🙂  If you haven’t already checked these out, please do so. They are words from the heart and there is an adventure waiting for you for all 30 days. The link is at the bottom of this posting.

 

Each of us travels on a journey whether we want to or not. It is up to us to decide where that journey will go and what we make of it. So often the focus is the destination but it is the journey that teaches us each and every day if we only stop and allow it to do so. It really is about the journey if you have not figured that out yet. 😉

 

We decide what we carry with us but very few of us realize that we take something from everyone we meet. Just think…we may not be consciously aware of such, but we pull from that interaction in some way. And the same happens in reverse…people take from us so we should be cognizant of what we are portraying. Imagine…something you take from someone that can impact a world tomorrow or vice versa for someone else. That is how important it is—of our journey and how we act toward others.

 

Think about this the next time you meet with someone…observe others…or when you are meditating about the day you have just experienced. Which people have impacted you? What have you learned and what can you apply? It may surprise you how easily people pick up things from us and use them in their lives. Sometimes we pick up these things and we don’t realize it.

 

Check out the Sreejit’s November daily posts beginning at30 Days of Walking with Intention (link).  

 

Happy Gardening! 🙂

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I’m having an issue—ok, issues. I’ve been stuck inside all weekend (rain and more rain) and that was after I had an awful migraine last week (sinus triggered) that lasted 4 days–never made it to the movie either. I’m going crazy and I am lonely. (sigh) I get down when I get like this…depressed a bit. I had gotten to a point where I’m usually ok with being by myself and all but I’m in need of some romance. Dang. I hate it when I get like this. There isn’t anything I can do. It just happens.

 

I have been dumped on so much for the past few weeks that I’m really feeling the effects. I like to celebrate Independence Day but with just me, I don’t get to do what I want these days. I’m feeling quite down about that too. I fight so hard at times and want to believe there is something better but I don’t see it. I don’t like the loneliness but here it is…still… I fight hard to be an optimist.

 

Over the weekend I was privileged to read about two ministers who I believe have been truly blessed. I write about these two but I know there are more out there. These are the people who should be speaking out for the world to hear—not the jokers that seem to have everyone’s attention and are center stage. They are the ones who have been called upon to serve—to be humble servants. Both ministers have felt that calling—to hear the needs of their parishioners…even their homosexual ones. While many a church believes that the Bible says homosexuality is a sin, there are people rethinking this and what exactly the Bible says. I’m not going into what it says mainly because I cannot judge someone.

 

What I see is ministers who are actually walking the path of Jesus Christ and it makes me feel quite glad. One actually broke down and was humbled before God. People in his church came to him seeking guidance. He talked about how when one left, he could not get up but rather got down on his knees and prayed. His prayers were answered because he chose to ask God how to help these people and he did not judge them nor did he say they were not worthy. He treated them with respect. 🙂

 

Another minister felt the call that his church was not serving all those that were in need because their Book of Discipline forbid it. He felt that there was something more that they could do so he presented the challenge before his Sunday school class and they answered the call by seeking to become a reconciliation church. This is a big step in some churches. It is a way to show they are seeking a different path and acknowledging we are different. We can’t cast people out because of the differences and we cannot say they are not welcome. 🙂

 

These are challenges before churches—not just these few but all churches. It isn’t going away. You cannot shut the door on it. You cannot close people out. For the past few years I have talked about being inclusive rather than exclusive and that is my belief.

 

A certain infamous blog person has taken to the blogwaves of how his heterosexual marriage is being harmed by the same sex marriage decision handed down by the US Supreme Court. Ok. I don’t see it. Other people’s marriages shouldn’t affect yours. If they do, you have issues too and they are worse than mine. 😉

 

All of this is going on and I cannot help but feel those heartstrings pull at me again—some call it a minister’s calling but I cannot answer that call. However, I can continue to blog and that might be my true calling after all. 🙂

 

Remember to treat others with true respect and try to love all people. Happy Gardening! 😀

 

 

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Life isn’t going the way a lot of people want it to go right now. I’m sorry. I feel your pain.

 

We are upon the end of June and the US Supreme Court will announce decisions today and Monday for the final wrap-up for this session. One of the big decisions is for same sex marriage. Most people believe (some are scared) that SCOTUS will rule in favor of SSM. That may further exasperate your pain. I think they should rule in favor.

 

I don’t have to defend my beliefs. I’m entitled to have them. I am a grownup and want this for others which means that I’m not being selfish. I think marriage is sacred whether you are married in a church or not. I think it is a serious covenant and commitment. I believe it is for life and I don’t think it should be taken lightly. With that said, I do not advocate a difference of marriage for same sex couples compared to heterosexual couples. I think marriage is marriage and I believe in equality for all people. It’s none of my business what people do behind closed doors. I don’t want to know what you or your spouse or significant other do in your bedroom. It’s no one’s business.

 

I believe this decision was made before they even heard arguments. Writing decisions takes a bit more time. Each justice has to plead their case whether it is in support of the decision or in the dissension. Case law is cited including any precedents that have taken place. I wish everyone knew more about the decisions that have been decided through the years. I never really cared about it until last year and I have been reading more about various cases.

 

People believe that states have the right to govern themselves but there is a problem with that. States are deciding to go against the US Constitution in making laws and that is where problems lie. Certain people have rallied and railed that they will do everything in their power to go against SCOTUS should they rule in favor of SSM. I believe these open threats are tearing at our country. They are wrong. I remember a certain war that was fought on this land…our homeland. Rather than choose to do the right thing, the south chose to go to war and the results were disastrous. We are still fighting the effects of that war which began in 1861 and ended 150 years ago.

 

I look back and see where certain people tried to stop such a nasty war because they knew the consequences. They would rather concede than fight. Certain ministers will have you believe this is the end of the world and that you need to gird on your armor and fight. I say, it is better to reach out a hand than to reach for a sword. It takes a strong man/woman to carry a full set of armor into battle but I wager that it takes a bigger man/woman to lay down his weapons and find compromise.

 

Life is difficult but it does not have to be. The path is lit—the road is clear. We can choose to walk down the path together or we can choose to fight each other in battle but remember that once you pick up that sword of aggression, you need to be prepared to kill. I do not think it is an option or that it is acceptable. Do you? Really read what Jesus tells us in the Bible. The answers are there. All you have to do is look.

 

I may be wrong but I will venture to hope that the vote goes 6-3 in favor with (I hope again) Justice Roberts in support. That would mean a lot. No matter what happens, I give my support to people who are marginalized, disenfranchised, and discriminated against. I stand with them. They are my brothers and sisters and they matter just as we all matter. 🙂

 

Happy Friday! 🙂

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Brené Brown as you may know is one of my biggest heroines. Her testimony of truth is rich, vital, and clearly a part of who she strives to be. She is a seeker. She does not accept life “as is” because she looks at the bigger picture, the gestalt.

I have linked to her videos a few times and I just cannot get enough because she is so relevant to the times we are witnessing. We are a broken society but we can choose to fix the wrongs we have inflicted on ourselves.

I want to share this blog post of hers…

Own our history. Change the story.  —  by Brené Brown

When we deny our stories, they define us.
When we own our stories, we get to write a brave new ending.

I know this is true. I may have learned it as a researcher but I live this truth as a daughter, a partner, a leader, a sister, a mother, and a friend. When we push down hurt or pretend that struggle doesn’t exist, the hurt and struggle own us.

I’ve learned that writing a brave new ending means:

  1. We can’t smooth over hurt feelings in our families. It’s too easy for stockpiled hurt to turn into rage, resentment, and isolation. We must talk about it. Even when we don’t want to. Even when we’re tired.
  2. We can’t pretend our family histories of addiction and mental health issues don’t exist if our hope is to write a new story and pass that legacy of emotional honesty and health down to our children.
  3. We must own our failures and mistakes so that we can learn and grow. It’s hard but I’ve seen how it becomes part of a family and organizational cultures and unleashes innovation and creativity. It doesn’t feel comfortable, but courage rarely does.

Owning our stories is standing in our truth. It’s critical and transformative in our personal and professional lives. It’s also critical in our community lives.

Until we find a way to own our collective stories around racism in this country, our history and the stories of pain will own us.

We will not get away from the violence and heartbreak. Fear and scarcity will continue to run roughshod over our country. Yes, the violence in Charleston is also about access to guns and, more than likely, mental illness. But it’s also about race.

Our collective stories of race in the US are not easy to own. …

continue reading — (link)

 

Can we make a difference? Yes… Happy Gardening! 🙂

 

 

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