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Too Blessed…To Be Stressed…

Walking the fur babies this morning led to a wonderful quote from a woman I greeted with, “How are you?”

“Too blessed to be stressed”, she replied and smiled a smile that competed with the brilliance of the sun’s rays on the sidewalk

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What a positive way to begin one’s day. A new day, without the anger and disappointment carried over from yesterday or the worries and fretfulness of tomorrows ‘what’s to come’.

 

Too blessed to be stressed.

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Those words remind me to heed and acknowledge the power of Gratitude.

Gratitude often ignored, often forgotten while one concentrates on the wants of what to have, and not  of what one already has.

It’s hard.

Life gets in the way and ruins all the good thoughts.

I don’t have a shower with cold water-at least I have a shower.

I don’t like the food I’m forced to buy due to finances-at least I have food.

I don’t like the apartment I live in as it’s overheated, too humid and needs new flooring and tiles-at least I have an apartment to call my own and it keeps me warm, with a floor to walk on.

I don’t have enough money-at least I have some money.

I don’t like having to make my own lotion and shampoo because I can’t afford to buy the ‘good stuff’-at least you have the ingredients and the stove and fridge to make the lotion and the shampoo.

I don’t like Fios or Time Warner service and can’t afford the full package deal-at least I got cable and a tv to watch it on.

I can bathe, cook, clean myself up, wake up from sleeping in a comfortable bed, have fur babies whom I love ( and where my salary goes to), a salary of some sort, food (okay it’s not all organic and vegan as I’d like it to be), once again FOOD, clothing (okay most of it’s from Sears)-so I need to shut up, get my butt back into volunteering and going to church to ease my mind and get the balance right in my head.

Yes.

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I am too blessed to be stressed.

 

**images from the Word Wide Web.

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I Would Do Anything for Love…

Yeah right!

Still single so how could I?

But…

I would do anything for love when it comes to my fur babies.

I’m already doing it. My salary is theirs. Working for the  six animals in the household. Four require serious and not so serious medication while the other two are thriving.

Health report of the fur babies:

Tara-Habby-Queen Bae.

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Big E-Leader of the upstairs pack.

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Winnie-Herpes

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Fate-Fibrinous Anteriour Uveitis in both eyes-FIP suspect

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Fate- 9 months

Pi Patel-aside from a career as a Mulberry model –possible liver cancer/dermatologic issues

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Toby-cataract and liver issues

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The caretakers:

Me-increased consumption in wine and trying to be a runner as well as trying to be a Buddhist,  trying to be an Episcopalian, while pretending to be a Catholic.

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Mom, my mom-bitchin about the fur babies!

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It’s all good.

At least, I keep telling myself, mantra style.

I’m gonna brag a bit.

No.

Not brag about the restaurants I visited, the vacations I had, my PR running time or even the enormous amount of weight I lost.

I’m a gonna brag about the Furbabies.

The Furs.

Home Cooking:

Anti inflammatory recipe for Pi Patel and now Tobias thanks to my dear neighbour Karen!

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This is how they roll…in the house of course.

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Tara-Habby’s throne

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The Habby’s private bathroom and rooftop lounge

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Private gym and library

Ok.

Enough of the brag.

 

Muchness

More words…

Soon to come.

For a bit of a spell,

 I lost my muchness.

But… 

IT’S BACK!!!!

 

Gus…

Yesterday, I saved a dog on a Saturday morning in Park Slope, Brooklyn.

He was running across a busy street known as Prospect Park West, adjacent  to Prospect Park in Park Slope, Brooklyn.

I was on my way to work at the clinic about to cross this street to walk on the side of the park when a dog ran into the middle of traffic.

Well…

I ran out into the middle of traffic to stop the cars from potentially running over the dog.

Well…

The dog and myself were lucky enough to not meet HIM, our maker that day. I was able to hold back traffic but not the dog,  now running down a block. The Farmers Market was taking place at the time so lots of humans were roaming the area. I called out to a jogger, “Please grab the dog”. He did so, hesitantly.

I made my way towards the dog and slowed down my pace as I approached it with my hand extended. The dog sat down, tail wagging and the jogger released his hold on the harness.

I wrapped my fingers around the metal link and did not let go.

The dog had tags on the collar…!

This is not Gus but he looks like him.

This is not Gus but he looks like him.

I sat on the curb, with Gus leaning on me, as a small crowd of witnesses gathered. I called the owners, balancing the tag with the info and punching the numbers into my cell. Others from the crowd volunteered to hold Gus.

I declined.

I was not going to let this angel out of my fingers.

A voice responded to my call and the wife of the husband who was walking the dog in Prospect Park was hysterical. She was at work and had no idea this transpired. I told her our location and promised to wait until her husband arrived.

Meanwhile the crowd slowly dispersed as I relayed the information about the owner coming.

Boy…was I gonna be late for work.

I’ve worked at PPAC for over a year now and cannot recall a time I was late.

It was hard to move with him as he was too big for me to carry with my bags and I had no leash to guide him but we made our way over to a nearby bench.

I heard the husband-owner  calling to Gus before seeing him as my back was turned to the side. He ran up to us and Gus was so excited to see his owner. He thanked me profusely, saying I saved his kids’ lives because if he returned home without Gus, they would be devastated. He apologized and admitted while in the park with Gus, he took his eyes off him for a moment, and he was gone. He wanted my address, to send flowers, to drop off a gift. I declined and I stretched out my hand. He grasped it firmly and we shook. He had tears in his eyes and I almost broke down crying.

Well…

Prior to this happening I was making my way to work was feeling discouraged and experiencing serious second doubts about my career choice. It can be frustrating and confusing at times when doubt seeps in the alma.

I love climbing mountains, and I love challenges and I feel stuck in a rut right now-a rut caused by my own psyche and wanting to know everything all at once.

Gus was a sign, in a strange way. Meeting him on that Saturday morning was a wake-up call.

I am, where I am supposed to be right here and now.

When I made it to work, I was deemed a hero. I saved Gus’ life. The owner (wife) phoned and asked for my info to send a gift.

I declined…again.

I told her I was a vet tech and she laughed and said Gus was lucky to have run into me. She asked where I worked and I told her.  Hopefully, we’ll get another client.

In the meantime, thank you Gus.

Yesterday, a dog named Gus saved me on a Saturday morning in Park Slope, Brooklyn.

 

Taking a leave of absence…

The church I attend is going through a transition of the most unnerving kind.

Transition= looking for a new priest to take over the helm.

Our Rector of 25+ years retired.

The process involves the Vestry, the interim priest, the Finance Committee ,the Search Committee, Park Slope, Brooklyn USA and a dilapidated rectory in need of major remodeling. It also involves, the Bishop of the Diocese and his Canon-all must work together in the interest of the church and its ministries.

Okay.

I am a member of this church, on the Altar Guild and once served as an LEM (Licensed Eucharistic Minister). I am also on the Vestry. The same Vestry that will soon receive my resignation letter. Hopefully someone who has more experience ‘playing in the sandbox’ with others (team player and head nodder) will sit in the empty chair.a6

This person will be:

-Someone who can weave in and out of the verbal obstacles, disagreements, rudeness, and get the job done.

-Someone who has patience to listen to rhetoric without seeing double after two minutes.

-Someone who tithes and sacrifices for the church-basically having a vocabulary where “no” is blasphemy.

-Someone who thinks as a whole for the greater good instead of the one.

-Someone who loves and cares about the future of this church more than how good we look on financial fiscal reports.

I am not a team player.

I prefer my own sandbox, with my organized grains of sand and my shovels, coordinated by size. I don’t like to clean up big piles of mess I didn’t make and usually don’t make my own big piles of mess to have to clean up to begin with.

Church politics and spirituality does not mix well for me.

It’s hard to play the game, be fake and smile while I would rather stare at you and throw imaginary lethal eye darts that turn to green ooze upon contact. Yes, it’s not the Christian thing to do. But, Christians do. We are not perfect no matter how hard we project to be.

In order to navigate through church politics while keeping spirituality in place one has to be malleable with a soft heart. Know when not to say hurtful things or at least think before saying the hurtful things (Oh yeah, the Four Agreements). Listen with reason, argue with love and never roll your eyes at someone as they look the other way.

What is difficult to be is why my resignation takes place.

I am not a team player.

But, with time and space, I may learn to play with one or two, definitely not three…maybe.

**photo from the web

The Four Agreements…

The Four Agreements are four sentences, written in simple words, but simple does not describe the act of putting into practice on a daily basis, what those sentences contain.

1. Be Impeccable With Your Word.

Easily done on my end as I can consciously think before speaking or better yet stop the flow of nonsense words from leaving my jabbering lips before my brain has a chance to edit, omit, rephrase…

What of gossip?

Gossip seems to be a cultural norm and almost impossible to avoid. There is gossip at my church, gossip at work, gossip at home, gossip running into neighbours. Some gossip is good and positive while most is downright ugly. I feel guilty when I indulge in the ugly gossip, miserable after I participate in it and ready for confession to purge my guilt after listening to it.

Speaking against myself?

I speak against myself all the time. It is an everyday occurrence between me, myself and I. Rarely do all three agree except when doubt, self-esteem, finances and negativity issues come to the surface. Then it’s a fiesta!

2. Don’t Take Anything Personally

Truly a hard one as I take everything personally! I try to please, all the time, with people and especially animals. If someone is negative towards me, I chastise myself. That someone of negativity is not blamed for something I probably did to warrant that kind of treatment.

3. Don’t Make Assumptions.

Are you kidding me?

We are a country of assumers and you know the saying, “When you assume you make an a** out of you and me…”. ‘Nuff said.
Assumptions lack clarity. It is easier to assume than to strive for clarification because one avoids confrontation and there are those who would rather face plague than confrontation.

4. Always Do Your Best.

This, I must pay attention to, as doing, my best is always 150% and I am treated often as if it were only 10%. (That’s another topic to cover in the future dealing with race-Your 100% = My 150%) Always doing my best is just that-doing my best, not more, not less, just what is needed to the best of my ability. A hard agreement to put into practice but worth it when done.

Part of my Lenten observance is adherence to three themes and the Four Agreements offer an opportunity to combine the themes with a practice.

Contemplation, Action and Resolve are in relationship with the Four Agreements. Examination of one’s’ past in order to move forward with understanding is a requirement. Action is placed in motion through understanding how past actions affects our present thoughts. Resolve is reckoning and moving forward with a new perspective.

There is a much deeper level towards interpreting and understanding the four agreements and the effects on ones’ life. This entry was my interpretation.

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*For more information

40 days…

LENT has arrived!

Forty days meditating and fasting in the wilderness left HIM hungry. The Not so Nice One turned hunger into opportunity and tried to tempt and persuade on three occasions. Each temptation met rejection. Each persuasion met rejection.

Every year at this time within churches around the world, this passage from the Gospels is read and discussed. This year while figuring out what Lent means to me and how I plan to celebrate, three words, Contemplation, Action and Resolve have settled into mi alma and are now my personal goals for LENT.  Supposedly,  LENT represents doing without or giving up, a sacrifice of some kind, but it also represents a chance to deepen our faith, study scriptures, discuss, argue, about our faith, our church, goals and most importantly acknowledging spirituality within and amongst each other.

Contemplation-Meditating on scriptures, mindfulness and fasting (no alcohol, fish on Fridays)

Action-to give more of what I can which is volunteering and to put into practice the Four Agreements

Resolve– what was experienced after 40 days, what stays, what goes…    

 

 

 

 

 

***Photo taken from internet

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