“I may not be rich…but I have GOD”

Work,  or the place I make money to sit in front of a desk, banging away at computer keys is not the place to be right now.

Diversity, cultural sensitivity, pay inequality, upward mobility-SQUASHED-like a bug meeting it’s maker in a leather shoe.

The people of colour are the worker bees.  Image result for worker bees

 

 

 

 

The people who have no colour are management.

Image result for white people

The company we work for is plump and tasty on the outside with brand colours sashaying in the wind of possible funders, grants and donations.

The company we work for is sour, vinegar and rot on the inside sashaying our token employees in the wind of possible funders, grants and donations.

The company we believe in doesn’t give a crap about us.

Thirty five hour work weeks are just illusions on paper, for the thirty five is actually forty five and beyound.

Overtime hours only exists in hours we hope will be collected and applied to pseudo vacation time instead of paying actual overtime hours. O/T is too expensive for the worker bees and management must preserve their own salaries.

So, the worker bees press forward, out of ignorance, desperation, some content with their salaries while others strive forward through low moral, depression, separation, divorce, as management continues to sit on their thrones of comfort, affordability and feeling so blessed and thankful that their salaries afford them lavish vacations around the world while growing so fat of the backs of the worker bees.

“I may not be rich, but I have GOD” Image result for GOD

He will set things right

right the wrongs

wrong the rights

Send a flood or fire to wash and burn the world of dirt, greed, and those who have everything while those who have nothing coexist right beside them.

-Enough. I am so tired.

I may not be rich…but I have GOD!

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

.  download

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.

images (1)

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.

images

I am too blessed to be stressed.

 

**images from the Word Wide Web.

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.

 

This lil lite of mine…

This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine

All of us love to shine our little lights. It gives us a sense of purpose to have the part of us, we so cherish and feel so worthy to own shine forth and if it is acknowledged by a boss or co-worker, lover, family, dog, cat… the happy, I am worthy dance commences.

The little light’ which shines from each of us, consists of show-casing our talents, what we do so well, and how it benefits others, even if you have the ’Shining’ Stephen King wrote about.

Musicians, artist, dog trainers, cleaners, designers, and the burger king cook who makes an awesome whopper-all shine on! We feel proud when given the chance to demonstrate our talents no matter how mundane they may seem to everyday society.

There are those who shine their lights graciously with a tad of humble pie  and others, well, the shine on their lights is above the normal kilowatt viewing and often leave halos around the eyes for days after a 2 second exposure.  Different strokes for different folks and yes, those that shine a tad too much are dangerously akin to non-verbal BULLHORNS!

At my job, the job I transitioned to and absolutely adore, little lights are constantly shining, glowing, fading, extinguishing and reigniting with a bang. The tech’s and doctors all have their little lights, special talents which, set them apart from everyone else and acknowledgement of these talents can turn a person’s partential bad day into a good.

So tomorrow, when I go in for my shift, I will acknowledge the “little light” shining from a co-worker and bring a smile to their face which in turn will make me smile.

Been a long time…

It’s been a long time since my words made their way onto a page.

Transitions continue to subtly move within mi alma and guide me towards the shifts needed to move from a mind-numbing rut into a forward moving , thinking with anticipation, embracing the changes strut. images[7]

I enrolled in an online vet tech program, in the process of completing my first semester of full time classes, gave two week notice, verbal and written at the 40 hour a week MICA shelter, began a part-time Sunday only vet tech assisting job, sent out resumes too numerous to mention, went and hopefully will continue to go on interviews and it’s all good. Being in my late 40’s, going through the changes and no, not menopause, makes it all good.

There have been kill-joys who wrinkle their noses upon learning of yet another of my career changes and that’s all good too. At least, I am blessed to have had the opportunity to explore and indulge where my passions take me-blowing in the wind.

But sometimes

The wind may die down and you drop where it stops and fall into a hole. The hole can feel like a big soft blanket, safe and comforting of the most anesthetizing kind. Food, alcohol and e-books are easily delivered with a click from the keyboard or a cell phone call.

And eventually

You realize the hole is just a hole with no forward or backward movement. It starts to become smaller and the big soft blanket now has scratchy fuzz which scrapes on your dry skin, waking you from the anesthesia you thought you had. Delivery food gets expensively boring and the alcohol makes you fat, while the unread e-books take up space on your Kindle.

I prayed and prayed, cursed, than prayed some more for guidance and HE gave it.

I slowly climbed from the hole and dusted the food crumbs off my body, got on the internet and researched on working with animals. My compassion and dedication to those who have difficulty defending themselves shifted from people to animals. This is now my forward motion and it’s all too good.

My two mini schnauzers have taught me many lessons : unconditional love, patience, understanding pain when it’s not expressed, getting rid of vomit stains, breaking up dog fights, cutting black nails, cleaning out ears, picking up feces , this can go on but it stops right now. I am grateful to them for their influence on my decision to embark on this career transition.

Thank you Tobias and Pi-Patel who incidentally, refused to get in the hole.

pihr5 pihr8

The Christian thing to do…

At one time, I thought being a part of a church would lead to spiritual growth.

At one time, I thought parishioners cared about the health and well-being of one another.

At one time, I thought attending services would lead to understanding and deeper appreciation of the Holy Scriptures.

I thought wrong.

Just because one is, a Christian does not automatically make them one and then again, my definition on what a Christian should be is just that, my definition.  My Christianity or what I believe defines me as one, are based on my own experiences and interactions within the church. No two experiences are similar, nor are scripture interpretations, prayers said, if at all, after communion, or what hat is appropriate for Easter. Christianity is a self-thing not communal as I once thought, which, proved to be wrong as well.

The Ten Commandments are a Christians’ guide to living life, but what one perceives as coveted could be another’s’ striving to attain the American dream. (Although the six room mansion with an indoor pool and marble bathroom is a bit much). If we truly loved one another, we would put forth the love we’d like to receive and not bear false witness with gossiping, lying, and acting incredibly cruel because we can. We would not cheat, murder (squashing an idea before it has roots is murder of the mind kind), or say, “OMG” at the slightest impulse or adulation of whatever.

Lessons I rather not learn are learnt. 551-001

Christians or parishioners are not the apostles, nor is the preacher, Jesus or God.

At one time, I thought, at least at my church, we, the parishioners were to mimic the apostles in spreading the good word and treating each other with love and kindness, as Jesus taught.

At one time, I thought the priest, preacher, rector or whatever the correct pc title is, were the instruments of God and through Jesus’ life and preaching would lead by example.

I thought wrong.

What I find are parishioners who are mean, afraid and quite frankly, lost. What I find is conflict and abusiveness with the leadership. What I find is a person, me, who once so adored her church, torn with a lack of trust in what is said and done. Well, what is said and not done or what should be said and done or not doing or saying anything at all.

I don’t know if I am the Christian I would like to be. It is hard to tear away the layers and see the truth that maybe in some way I am like those whom I criticize. Worse, is seeing the truth and not knowing what to do with it.

Transitions continue, welcomed or not, bearing good news or showing up the ugly truths.

Instead of participating in this Lenten season, I find quietness, comfort and solace within my Forward Movement, at home with a bag of Frito lays.

What the buddha…

‘Prayer is talking to God
Meditation is listening to God’-
meditation teacher from Introduction to Meditation

Buddha-w

The other night, I went to an Intro to Meditation class at the Tibet House in NYC.

The teacher, a commanding presence in a room full of ‘wanna be’ meditation practitioners, was straightforward in her lecture style, which began with an inquiry into students’ meditation practices. After listening to the different styles, breathing techniques and so forth, she proceeded to dismiss most of the students’ practices. In other words, their meditation practice lacked technique, structure or a teacher’s guidance, which would cloud clarity.

This was alarming news to those ‘wanna bees’ who thought they were meditating the correct way. Presently, I am a meditation explorer, testing the waters, dipping my big toe in anticipation of diving into this practice. I am as green as a lime when it comes to knowledge of meditation techniques and secretly aspire to become a ‘wanna be’!

The teacher wanted to know why we came to the intro on such a cold night. One student stated she came to learn how to gain more focus and control her wandering mind during meditation. The teacher prompted the student to elaborate. The student responded reflectively and declared her wandering mind interferes with her yoga rendering her attempt at advanced poses.

The teacher’s response to the student: “Let it go”.

Silence and static filled the room like a bad smell.

“Let it go. If you can’t do the poses, let it go. If it’s not enjoyable, let it go”.

More silence and I thought I heard some students gathering up their belongings and coats.

I finally got it.

The teacher’s ‘Let it go’, was not to be taken by its literal sense. The teacher wanted the student to see the pressure she was placing upon herself, by her own expectations. Instead of finding enjoyment in the movement of her body towards forming the poses, she fixated on attaining proper form as well as the expectation of the yoga teacher. The student placed all these constraints on herself and it interfered with the enjoyment of yoga for yoga’s sake.

“Let it go”, meant let go of the constraints placed upon yourself, let go of what is preventing you from enjoyment-not let go of the activity-unless the activity itself is not causing joy.

That made good sense to me.

So, I put into this into practice and found myself letting go, last night, during a running workshop. Yes, I caved in and with the flow of transitions guiding me, enrolled in a Beginner’s running group. The group meets Wednesday nights and Sunday mornings for training until the end of March.

I am not a night person and thought running at night would be disastrous.

It is not.

I am a morning person and enjoy the runs on Sunday.

I do.

The group is competitive.

I am not.

I am not the first to reach the finish nor am I the last.

It does not matter.

Running or penguin running for me is better than a glass of wine or eating a Nathan’s hot dog.

During last night’s run, the sound of my feet climbing the hills was mesmerizing as I felt the cold wind down my throat. I stopped to pet every dog along the way, even the French bulldog who got a little too friendly. I smiled at people and the heaviness of working at the shelter no longer placed pressure on my chest.
I reached the finish and stretched out the kinks in my legs.

Pressure, criticism, worry, doubts, contradictions or expectations were not riding my back with the imaginary monkeys.

I just ran like a penguin and it felt incredibly good.

At this moment…

January 30, 2013

At this moment, I find myself in the midst of transitions of the most unexpected and most gentle kind.

At this moment, I overheard mom talking to her half-sister over the phone. Another McCalla, Victor McCalla, my mother’s brother died. Death is usually the only reason a McCalla would contact another McCalla. The drama of he said, she said and there will be no burial, cremation, and the ashes will sit on the living room shelf until someone goes to Honduras mantra starts after the death announcement.

If I remained a Walsh, my reaction to this news, the mantra not the death, would be comic relief but since I became a McCalla my reaction to the mantra remains, trying not to react. I always cry at the news of death.

Mom’s side of the family is dysfunctional and I believe Webster honoured them with the definition. Mom’s family is also large. Out of ten children, only four are presently alive and only two communicate maybe once a year. Two are on the east coast, two on the west and east does not speak to west.

All the McCalla’s (except me…sigh) were born in Honduras, when Belize was British Honduras. Some were born in Tela, others in Roatan while La Ceiba claimed another. Some were born with Indian hair soft as silk, while others had coarse wavy hair that refused taming with VO5, while yet others had the kinky cotton kind of hair which only  a lye relaxer could control. The relaxer ruined the hair passed down from their ancestors. The hair from Africa by way of Akan, Bantu, Igbo, Fon or possibly Yoruba, way before Scotland via Jamaica than onto Honduras and mixed with a bit of India saturated the blood.

Mi Tío could not stand his African hair. He could not stand his last name either and changed it to Mangroo. It sounded more Indian, which he longed to look like but did not. Mom's brother045

His kidneys could not stand his body for they failed. His weekly battle with the dialysis machine was just that, man against machine and of course, the machine was in control. As the machine cleansed his blood of waste, it also cleansed his alma (soul) leaving it bitter and in disarray.

Was I close to my uncle?

No.

I did not like him. He favoured my light-skinned sisters with Spanish lessons and his version of Indian history. He was mean to me and spoke harshly to me and about me. He once accused my mom of jealousy towards her sister’s kids, for they were born with the wavy hair that refused taming with VO5. I was born with the kinky cotton kind of hair which mom coated with lye relaxer to control.

I hope my uncle, mi tío, is in a better place now. A place where there are no dialysis machines, where he does not have to endure living in his house with an ex-wife and her boyfriend because he refuses to sell and pay off the ex, where skin colour has no meaning and speaking Spanish is irrelevant. I hope the angels are soothing his soul or that karma will take pity on him when he returns.

Once, I could not stand my African hair and yearned to look Indian like my mother with her Indian features and Indian hair, soft as silk. But, God gave me what I was born with for a reason and I am grateful for his gentle everyday reminder of who I am and where I come from.

A lil Griping…

I know few people who enjoy spending 30-40 hours working for a company that is not their own. I know few people who own a business and I know few people who enjoy spending those hours with co-workers from hell.  I am one of those few people that I know.  I am also one of the millions of busy worker bees not seen on TV bragging about my wonderful fourteen hour a day job at a Fortune 500. Instead I gripe-no, it is not complaining for gripers are unique in their own right as the word gripe is. For me, griping is done silently, in the form of internal dialogue-not to be confused with voices barking out psychotic orders.

When griping graduates to redundancy and excuses are used up and I can no longer blame myself, I blame GOD and angrily ask, “Why are you punishing me? What sin did I commit that deserves this unjust reward? Where are the guardian angels, the spiritual ones, the keepers and watchers of anguished souls?  Why can I not win the lottery? If you let me win, I’d never complain about anything…EVER…again!

Of course, my questions go without response. At God’s doorstep, questions are presented and often left under the ‘Welcome’ mat. HE does not operate the way I would like HIM to and who am I to tell HIM what to do? HE may also not give me what I demand and after time has passed and I am mad at him again, I realize what was given turns out to be what was needed.

After the tantrums, the whining and sniffling centered on my wretched circumstances brought on by my own poor planning subsides- I pray. My prayers surprise me for I pray in gratitude mode, sending out thanks for the stuff that is going right, for the stuff I do have, for the stuff I enjoy and the people, I enjoy doing stuff with.

When I pray, HE listens and when I don’t, HE listens- to the silence. 

At times, I pray for better circumstance such as the time the “C” diagnosis came for a short visit, an uninvited guest who decided to move into mom, my mom’s colon. The eviction chemo was trying and draining on mí alma (my soul).  I prayed, screamed, hollered and read aloud Mathew 7 with a concentrated effort on the ask and it will be given to you part. The asking, begging and bargaining on my part was relentless. And now, three years later, I thank HIM every week, after receiving communion for saving my mom and allowing the chemo to do its’ job.

Griping about work-now back to the beginning of all this.

In due time, once the fog has rolled out or better yet after the first three weeks in this new position, I  am able to see the commonality shared with the so-called co-workers from hell.  We love to eat lunch and enjoy doing so. I will eat healthy, they will not.  I believe in integrity and working hard regardless of the crap pay and the lack of Thank Yous from the higher ups while the co-workers complain and back stab one another, smiling, as they walk out the door fifteen minutes before quitting time, well, so much for commonality.

I need to and have to work. No choice, for the bills gotta be paid and the insurance must be active. So I work, begrudgingly for I’d rather be home writing, chasing the internet, FBing, emailing and sometimes just basically wasting time while my fingers punch in alphabet keys.

Wasting time does not pay the bills-so I work, begrudgingly.

A lil griping relieves the frustration and the tension.

 

My Favourite Quote

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

-Marianne Williamson, A Return To Love: Reflections on the Principles of A Course in Miracles, Harper Collins, 1992. From Chapter 7, Section 3 (Pg. 190-191).

Reading Williamson’s quote, for the first time and realizing how often I had dimmed my own light in order to let another’s shine was difficult to admit and more so difficult (and still is) to stop.

I did not ask myself, who was I to be brilliant gorgeous, talented and fabulous, but rather, I criticized, butchered and self sabotaged any of my attempts to be. Playing small, protected me and kept others from emotionally hurting me at a comfortable distance. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you, protected me, once again, from others who indulged in stripping away my emotional defenses and once raw, delighted in tearing at my emotional skin. We were meant to shine, as children do, I grew up with children should be seen, seldom if possible and never heard.

Then, surprisingly, as the years progressed, I grew up emotionally and continue to do so.

You are a child of God, and yes, truly I am. And I was, born to manifest the glory of God that is within us, for to hinder or ignore HIS glory would be to deprive myself of a wonderful gift that was freely given to me. I will let my own light shine, although there are times when the output may fluctuate between 25-150 watts, but nonetheless, it will shine.  And, as I celebrate my own light so will others around me for joy is infectious, unless one has been inoculated.

I continue to struggle with liberation from my own fears and eventually, I will get there.

Previous Older Entries

%d bloggers like this: