Healing

Heavenly Father, our human ties with our friends of other species is wonderful and special gift from You. We now ask You to grant our special animal companions your Fatherly care and healing power to take away any suffering they have. Give us, their human friends, new understanding of our responsibilities to these creatures of Yours. They have trust in us as we have in You; our souls and theirs are on this earth together to give one another friendship, affection, and caring. Take our heartfelt prayers and fill Your ill or suffering animals with healing Light and strength to overcome whatever weakness of body they have.

Your goodness is turned upon every living thing and Your grace flows to all Your creatures. From our souls to theirs goodness flows, touching each of us with the reflection of Your love. Grant to our special animal companions long and healthy lives. Give them good relationships with us, and if You see fit to take them from us, help us to understand that they are not gone from us, but only drawing closer to You. Grant our prayer through the intercession of good St. Francis of Assisi, who honored You through all Your creatures. Give him the power to watch over our animal friends until they are safely with You in eternity, where we someday hope to join them in giving You honor forever. Amen.   Saint Francis of Assisi, for our Animal Friends

It’s been a very busy week and I am very glad it is nearly over.

Abby did very well with her surgery. She was able to come home Wednesday afternoon. As you can see, her eyes were open but I’m not sure what she was seeing.

Ms. Abby Rose continues to improve by the minute. This morning she was playing and dashing about almost like her usual self. I’d forgotten how quickly little puppies heal as well as how challenging it is to try to contain and slow them down.

The good part of it is, by noon she is ready to nap. Thankfully, I get to join her.

Many thanks to all for your good wishes, your thoughts, and most of all, your wonderful prayers.

Dear God, you have given us care over all living things; protect and bless the animals who give us companionship and delight, make us their true friends and worthy companions. Amen. 

~Author Unknown~

 I am…

B…simply being. 

~Peace be with you, my friends.~

Worry

“All worries are less with wine.” 

Amit Kalantri, Wealth of Words

Oh, the worries have begun and I have poured a glass of wine.

Tomorrow I take little Abby to be spayed. Simple procedure, I know. I know it’s done thousands of times a day. The reality is just thinking about driving to the vet these days gives me palpitations.

My experiences being the care recipient rather than the care giver has certainly opened my eyes.

I understand on a whole new level the concern many of the patients and their families had when they came to the hospital or clinic. It was so routine for me I rarely, if ever,  stopped to think about it. In spite of their fear they trusted me with their care or the care of their family member.

I did not fully appreciate that dynamic until very recently.

It is and continues to be a very humbling realization.

Dear God,

I come to you today to ask you to guide those taking care of Abby tomorrow. She is oour young pup full energy, adventure, and the zest for life. She has brought such joy to our home. I am so honored and grateful she is part of our lives.

God, I ask you to bless all caregivers. May they find strength in seeing the good they do and understand how important they are in lives of all who are under their care. 

For myself and the other care recipients, I ask you send our angels and guides in close. May they help us understand what it is we need to do in order to care for our loved ones, each other, and ourselves. I ask You, Lord, to be with us as we each face our challenges of the day.  Amen.

~Barbara Jo Burton Hibdon, June 25, 2019~

I am…

B…simply being. 

~Peace be with you, my friends.~

 

 

 

 

 

Morning Chats

“You cannot fully understand a person’s need until you have endured the same need. As hard as you may try to predict and comprehend their situation and suffering, I guarantee you’ll fall short until you’ve been there.” 

Richelle E. Goodrich, Making Wishes

A little over a year ago I began what I call my morning chats.

These chats started because a dear friend of mine lost her husband. I was far way and knew a trip up to see her was not possible. Calling her didn’t feel right. What do I do?

I sent her a text.

That text started a morning routine that continues today.

Over time, I’ve added others to my morning chats. Some are daily chatters, some once a week, and others I know only have time for quick chats every now and then.

It’s all worked out very very well.

What’s interesting is these how these chats have evolved into so much more–for all of us. Because of this little forum, we have an outlet to share our daily lives–either in a nutshell or we can type away and unload all our recent frustrations.

I never know what I’ll learn–every morning it is surprise just waiting to happen.

My friend Mary’s grand daughter was so surprised her grandma texted daily. Charlotte was even more impressed to learn her grandma had been friends with that person for almost fifty years.

Okay–truth be told–I’m pretty impressed with that fact, too.

The moral of the story–if there is one–is simple.

There is usually a way to reach out to someone. Whether I like it or not, I am beginning to understand being there in person may not always be possible. Even though it often drives me insane, our modern technology allows me to stay in touch with people who are hundreds, if not thousands of miles away form me.

One of the few benefits of getting older is gaining life experiences. Sooner or later we will all need the help of friends. God knows I’ve leaned on many shoulders over the years. It’s all part of the deal–we’re handed a challenge, we learn, and we survive in order to reach out and help one another.

Heavenly Father,

Today I pray for my family and friends. May these special people find comfort in the knowledge they are unconditionally loved. May they see and understand their own strengths and unique inner power. As their awareness grows help them find the peace they seek.

I thank you for the gift of all who have been a part of my journey. May my awareness grow so I can continue to learn and share my life lessons with old and new friends.  

Father, I am humbled by your many blessings.

I am grateful.

Amen.

~Barbara Jo Burton Hibdon, June 24, 2019~

I am…

B…simply being.

~Peace be with you, my friends.~

Thank you, Glynis Walker Morse, for sharing your wonderful picture today. I thank you and I love you. 

A Gift

This month two of my friends will mark the first anniversary of the death of their husbands.

Anniversaries are hard for many reasons. It’s been my experience very few people remember these types of uncomfortable dates, especially after the first year has passed–even fewer remember as time moves slowly on.

In fear of doing something wrong and/or dragging up more pain, most will opt to do nothing.

If, like me, know someone who has had a difficult loss, I believe the best gift you can give them is time.

With all the modern technologies literally at our fingertips, it’s so easy to pick up the cell phone and leave a voice message or send a text. This type of non-intrusive message gives the person the space and luxury of answering immediately or waiting until he or she is ready. Plus, in a matter of minutes, your grieving friend knows someone remembers and is thinking of them.

Reach out, my friends, because it’s a road we will all walk down in one way or another.

Help me, God, to listen with my entire being. When I am in pain, give me the courage to trust others enough to bare my heart to them. And when there is no one to listen, hear me, God. Hear me and heal me. Amen

Rabbi Naomi Levy, To Begin Again

I am…

B…simply being.   

~Peace be with you.~

 

Summers

“I look around the room and can’t help but think about how it is the little things we look back on in life. I wonder how often people think that they should pay more attention to them.” 

Erika Lance, Behind the Veil

Writing about the meter man yesterday set my mind in motion.

I’ve been thinking about other memories from my childhood, especially summertime ones.

  • I remember hurrying through lunch so I could get in the pool as soon as it opened at 1 p.m. After all–I knew I could NOT go into the water for 45 minutes after eating which meant I HAD to be done with lunch by 12:15.
  • This brings up another food related issue–remember fasting for 3–or was it 4–hours before going to communion? I think I could not drink anything for an hour before receiving communion. As I got older I started factoring in how long the first part of Mass would be so I could eat for a longer period of time. Going to a hot church on an empty stomach never worked out well for me.
  • I remember walking all over town from one friend’s house to anothers. The only requirement was telling mom where I was headed. My sisters and I were lucky because there were so many kids our age in our neighborhood. Unless there was something special going on, we never had to go far to be with friends.
  • In our little town in Iowa there were summer carnivals every year. I remember how excited we all were when we saw the trucks come through town and start setting things up on Main Street.
  • Having the windows open so I could hear the trains come through town while I fought sleep in order to make plans for the next day.
  • Swimming lessons and learning the skills needed so I could swim my two laps and go into the 10 foot part of the pool.
  • Lightning bugs.
  • Kool-aid.
  • Rushing through breakfast so I’d be ready to run outside to play as soon as the first neighbor kid knocked on the front door.
  • Fresh sweet corn on the 4th of July followed by ripe watermelon.
  • Sparklers.
  • None questioned whether or not we were safe. Our parents had those soft rules of being home in time for supper and come in when the street lights went on.
  • Growing up in a small town at the time my friends and I grew up was one of the many blessings I didn’t appreciate until not that many years ago. We didn’t need much more than a swim suit and a summer pass to the pool. Shoes were often optional.
  • Talking my dad into buying my first pair of flip flops–they were called thongs then–he absolutely hated them.
  • Home made ice cream.
  • Taking pictures with the Kodak camera and realizing we’d used the last side of the flash cube. Unfortunately there was still one unexposed picture on the roll. That meant it maybe months before that roll is used up and another few months before it’s taken in to be developed.
  • Singing and swinging on the swingset in the backyard.
  • Fresh tomatoes from the garden.
  • Going uptown for my mom to buy a loaf of bread and a package of cigarettes–she’d sent along a handwritten note which worked just fine, no questions asked. There would always be some drama when I got home because I never wanted to give them to her so she’d have to quit.
  • Waiting for my Gram to come visit.
  • Trying to drink a Fizzie–I think that’s how it was spelled. I never was able to drink one–reminded me of my dad’s Alka-seltzer.
  • Collecting pop bottles and turning them in for cash at John’s Little Store on the hill. Hopefully everyone would make it to the store before their paper sack broke. John was always patient with us and had the absolute best penny candy–it was worth the walk.
  • Going to the movies so we could all get out of the heat. If I was very lucky, I’d get to have my very own bag of candy and popcorn.
  • Nightly neighborhood hide and seek which evolved into kick the can.
  • Saying my prayers with my mom never once thinking she wouldn’t always be there.

During these hot summer days, grab a snack, pour a glass of wine, and take a few minutes to think back. If you’re a baby boomer like me, I think you might be surprised at how awesome those childhood memories really are.

“I wonder if we would ever switch back to old photo albums we got printed from photography shops. A Kodak KB10 camera with 36 photos worth of film roll, waiting for it to complete before sending the photos for developing.

Nothing was instant, it would sometimes take months to compete a film and weeks to get the prints.

The joy of seeing the photos, the disappointment to find a ruined image due to shaky hands.

Even after having lots of camera and GBs of memory cards will never bring the same feeling.”

Crestless Wave

I am…

B…simply being.

~Peace be with you.~

Meter Man!

“It is a mind-wandering time

Remember the old times

when illusions were distinct

Remember the old times

when a friendly chat

was all we needed

to brighten up our hearts” 

Rixa White

I’d spent the morning working in the yard.

I was tired, thirsty, and hungry. I’d started early in hopes of completing what I wanted to get done before the heat took command of the day.

I almost made it–my goal was in sight but the sun had burned its way through the clouds, raising both the temperature and the humidity.

I waved the white flag.

As I ate my peanut butter toast and drank my third glass of chilled water, I read through my Facebook feeds. What I found became the theme of today’s story–meter readers.

I grew up in the Waterloo/Cedar Falls part of Iowa. As a kid, and even as a young adult, our meters were read manually by a man who came to every house every month.

The interesting part of this was the meters were located INSIDE the houses. Not a problem because commmon practice was to leave doors unlocked.

As I rehydrated, other posts of meter man experiences sparked my own memories.

I remember being home, all of us going about daily routine, when a sharp knock would be heard on the back door, the door opening as a strong male voice sang out, “Meter Man!”

If, by chance no one was home and the door locked, the meter man would leave a card in the door frame. This card had pictures of the meter dials so the homeowner could read his own meter and mail it into the power company.

The degree of trust, goodness, and honestly for members of our community does not seem real or remotely possible to me today.

It was such a great memory I had to share in case you had similiar experiences and wanted to take your own walk back in time.

Everybody needs his memories. They keep the wolf of insignificance from the door.” 

Saul Bellow

I am…

B…simply being.

~Peace~

 

 

A Monday Afternoon Prayer

You have blessed me with many gifts, God, but I know it is my task to realize them. May I never underestimate my potential; may I never lose hope. May I find the strength to strive for better, the courage to be different, the energy to give all that I have to offer. Help me, God, to live up to all the goodness that resides within me. Fill me with the humility to learn from others and with the confidence to trust my own instincts. Thank You, God, for the power to grow. Amen.

Levy, Naomi. Talking to God: Personal Prayers for Times of Joy, Sadness, Struggle, and Celebration (pp. 225-226). Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group. Kindle Edition. 

I am…

B…simply being.

~Peace~ 

 

Naps

“Here’s to the moments when you realize the simple things are wonderful and enough.” 

Jill Badonsky, The Awe-manac: A Daily Dose of Wonder

One of the blessings of getting older is the ability to slow down and appreciate the small things.

Summer returned today which made working in the yard short lived.

As you can see, Abby had no problem showing me how to take a break this afternoon. Bud, Abby, and I headed inside to take a nap.

This little girl is sets a great example and is an excellent teacher.

Yes, my friends, I think she’s a keeper.

The Test

Oh, yes, I’ve reached those golden days

You so much about;

I don’t feel any older yet,

But will one day, no doubt.

The sky is still a lovely blue,

The rose is just as sweet.

Each day is like another chance

To make my life complete.

Sure, there’s hardship, sorrow and pain,

Who thougth there wouldn’t be? 

But now I know it’s just a test

To find the worth in me.

Betty Irean Loeb

I am…

B…simply being. 

~Peace~

Observations

“If, then, I were asked for the most important advice I could give, that which I considered to be the most useful to the men of our century, I should simply say: in the name of God, stop a moment, cease your work, look around you.” 

Leo Tolstoy, Essays, Letters and Miscellanies

I have been working in the yard these past few days. The heat of summer has moved in early. Even starting early in the day my energy level is zapped to zero by noon. The up side is I have had lots of time to think about what I want to write. The down side is I don’t have a lot of energy left for the writing and editing part of the deal.

Every day I am learning more about plants native to Texas. All those lessons are confirmed by my many scratches and puncture wounds. It seems most native plants have some form of protection–needles, thorns, spikes….the list of weaponry is incredible well as subtle. Just when you think something is safe to pull–zing–another lesson learned.

I’ve been observing my surroundings–remember my word for the year is ‘awareness.” There is a native plant here that wickedly painful to trim. As I tried to find a way to remove it without impaling myself, I noticed the wrens build their nests in this plant. It is so full of thorns it is a virtual fortress. After noticing them I decided it may be wise to work them into the yard by carefully trimming them. It was a win/win situation–I had something to fill space in my garden and the cute little wrens had a safe place to build their own homes.

One more lesson on taking the time to observe before taking any action.

My hope is the prayer I found to share today will speak to you as it did to me.

The Voice Within

I took a little walk today

To listen to God’s word,

And then I stopped to rest awhile

This is what I heard:

“Dear one, there’s someone waiting

To hear from you today,

Someone who needs your loving heart

To spread joy in its own way;

Never turn away my child

I bid you to press on.

Let your light forever shine

To reach this precious one. 

Who knows what happiness can come

From loving thoughts so true,

Go forth and spread your sunshine

Only good can come to you.” 

And as I left my quiet place

I felt such peace within,

Because I knew what I should do

To love and honor Him.

Jan Edwards, Bedside Prayers

I am…

B…simply being.

~Peace~

Unanswered Prayers

“Help” is a prayer that is always answered. It doesn’t matter how you pray–with your head bowed in silence, or crying out in grief, or dancing. Churches are good for prayer, but so are garages and cars and mountains and showers and dance floors. Years ago I wrote an essay that began, “Some people think that God is in the details, but I have come to believe that God is in the bathroom.” 

Anne Lamott, Plan B: Further Thoughts on Faith

I’ve been thinking a lot these past few days.

Working in our yard is a wonderful time to let unfiltered thoughts flow through my mind. I’ve discovered I don’t overthink when I’m moving rock and rebuilding walls.

Songs tend to get stuck in my head when I’m outside. Yesterday the song playing over and over in my mind was Garth Brooks’ song, Unanswered Prayers.

This song always makes me remember the things I’ve prayed the hardest for and felt fell on deaf ears. Where was God and how could my prayer go answered?

Now, I smile and shake my head, thanking God for all those answered prayers. As I see the different scenarios play back, the “what ifs” congregate in my head, creating feelings of sadness, regret, insight, and, above all, gratitude.

I’m learning the best prayers may not be those I’ve memorized. Not that long ago I realized the words I said by rote were not the real words of the prayer. I had to chuckle. I knew I did that with some songs–singing words that were not even close to what the real lyrics. I never imagined I’d done the same with prayers.

I still start my day with the prayers my mom taught me 60 plus years ago. These days I say each word slowly, appreciating the meaning of the prayer as I remember her patience with me as I learned each word.

Lately I’ve been searching for new prayers, gathering them to share as well as using them as guides in hopes they can help me begin to write my own prayers to share.

Lucky for me, God seems to be encouraging me because I’ve found some of the best prayers are short and simple.

“Lord, make me a blessing to someone today.” 

Jan Karon, At Home in Mitford

I am…

B…simply being. 

~Peace~