Morning FAM. I’m touching on something of great importance this week, children of all ages and dealing with a loved one with a life-threatening or life-changing illness or disease such as Cancer or Heart Disease and Diabetes. My friend Susie has a good friend Rachel who a mother of a beautiful 5 year old boy, and she has Ovarian Cancer it’s terminal, it has spread to her liver, the trial she thought she would be eligible for is now not an option. Thus, Palliative Care begins with Chemotherapy and Pain Meds still giving her approximately 6 to 9 months if that. Every time we spoke about this young woman (she’s approximately 40) and her condition as a Survivor I would relay to Susie that Rachel has to fight and most importantly have faith and pray, it was a necessity for me as I could not bear to leave my children alone on this earth without their Mother. I would be somewhat stoic when Susie would discuss Rachel with me because ONE it was difficult for me to hear about the pain and difficulties with treatments and issues with insurance and physicians as I had dealt with it and it is disheartening. I felt some guilt about the fact I’m doing really well and I get to see my children and reap the rewards of being “Present” as do my children from my being here…Only a phone call or a hop, skip and jump away. Little Oscar won’t have that soon, and it breaks my heart. I don’t know this woman at all per exception of what I have learned from my friend but I do know that as a “Mother” this is without a doubt something I hate and I don’t use that word often. I hate Cancer! I hate that it “TAKES” even when you have nothing left to give…and it even takes from the innocent ones, children…The reality is as an adult and Mother I could’ve faced my immortality but I didn’t want my daughter’s to live life not having their Mom around especially since the loss of their Father so many years ago, all I can think about is the fact Mother’s are the nurturers and not saying Men aren’t but at any age the heartbeat of your Mother is something you never forget, you were inside of this Woman, she and you are forever connected no matter what age you become. Susie is going to be assisting with helping Rachel write letters, film videos and take pictures for the future for this young boy but it will never ever replace her being here with him and although we cannot predict the future and how this will affect him long term I do pray that their short time together here on this earth has ingrained within him a love like no other and he’ll always know that he was wanted and loved by a Mother that fought hard not to leave him, not because she will miss things like his graduation from Kindergarten or loss of his teeth and playing tooth fairy, holiday’s and birthdays…but all days, all moments that Mommy’s cherish with their beings…his first date, first heartbreak, wedding day and birth of her first grandchild. All I know is that so many times we discuss how we feel as the survivors and patients, what have you but we don’t discuss the one’s left behind in the midst of the doctor visits, medicines, weight loss that is so significant it brings tears to your eyes and as to not upset them you quickly turn away catching that hiccup in your throat. I’m just in third person and I quickly get away from Susie when she wants to share about Rachel not because I’m cold-hearted but because I cannot deal with how it makes me feel, as this situation could be mine. I could be dying as I thought I was at one time just a few years ago. I wish I had a magic wand and could turn back the hands of time for Rachel and little Oscar and his Dad and family members. Their are plans for the impending summer for them to spend together so as their happy memories for Oscar and family and friends whom love her and this sweet boy. It is so unfair, I realize anything I’m going through right now is irrelevant because things could always be much worse. So, I pray for Rachel that a guiding Angel is with her and will be there to guide her onto Heaven when God decides to take her home with him, only then will her suffering end but I believe the pain before she closes her eyes won’t be the physical pain but the pain of leaving her precious boy, cause I know no matter how much pain I was in all I could think of was my babies, I had to be strong and fight for them as well as myself I didn’t want to die…not yet. I looked up resources for children that parent dies from Cancer and their isn’t much out there sad to say and perhaps some attention should be addressed towards children and teens whom are or have gone through the loss of a parent from a life changing disease. I have some ideas but it takes a village in this case as well. I ask that you send prayers this way to Philadelphia for Rachel and her son Oscar as well as her husband and family as it’s the best hope and blessing to offer. Blessings……Kim
It’s a new day we are closing out the month of March in a couple of days. It’s been a minute since I’ve written down my thoughts or anything that may be pertinent to share with you all. Yet, after pondering and most importantly praying on it I’ve come to my topic as we approach April.
March was a whirlwind month not just because I celebrated my 49th year on this earth but because I shared some beautiful moments with my daughter’s and family, some whom I hadn’t seen since I was a child, reconnecting with your family and loved ones is very important and don’t allow time to keep passing using the excuse you don’t have the time nor the opportunities to do so. You must find the time for both yourself and those that are important to your life, as our time here on earth we have no idea when or where the moment God decides to take us home with him will occur. Getting back to the whirlwind of March, well “Spring” didn’t happen. It’s still cold, windy and even rainy and snowy in some parts, God putting those meteorologists out of business, because they don’t know nothing right about now. I’ve been asked if I’d be interested in both speaking and volunteering at Breast Cancer Events and to media, I’m happy to oblige because I think it’s important to both share my story and to perhaps share a morsel or two of positive information that should be imparted onto a person either dealing with the disease or to a caregiver/family member/friend whom is at a loss of what to do for that person or even themselves. I know I had a whole lot of support and it came from unexpected places as well as from my own daughter’s and family, I don’t know how I would’ve survived otherwise, along with laughter, and of course prayer first and foremost, I depended heavily of my faith and did everything from grilling my doctors on how aggressively we would treat this disease and talking and sometimes crying with my therapist and family when I needed too. It’s something that many of us don’t want to “share” our emotions but reality and even medical science has proven that holding things in will cause stress which can, no…will kill you. I have told this story many times and will continue to do so. My faith, my daughter’s got me through…I love my children so very much and after the loss of their father I made up my mind that I wasn’t going anywhere anytime soon. I had a life to live for myself but also for the three blessings God gave me. I’m so grateful that although I still have days when issues from my surgeries, treatments and now my meds don’t allow me to feel so good I just suck it up and keep on truckin’, because I have decided that I am going to LIVE…Fully and Wonderfully and that obstacles are part of life. You cannot give up, You must at times drop to your knees and cry out, then get back up. You have so much to be graterful about, you have so much more to learn, you have more love to give…and even receive. Am I making sense? I know that I am, I prayed about what to speak about and I wanted to encourage you all to do what you may not want to do to continue to live splendidly, what you put out in the atmosphere is what you get back in return. So in other words if you don’t give a Hoot, then you won’t get Hoot back. Don’t complain when you throw your hands up or scratching your head or beard going “Why did that happen to me?” You know why! Like the old folks say “You can’t lie to yourself, you may to others but you know YOUR Truth!”
Beginning this month I am adding to my volunteering. I already volunteer at Lauri’s school filming the Acting class for Adults (yep, Kimmy is becoming gadget friendly..ER!) I will be taking Cancer patients to their Chemo and Radiation appointments, I was very fortunate to have someone I loved and who loved me back take me every single week I had my treatments, I’m just paying it forward. You can too if you have an Enterprise CarShare in your city, in conjunction with American Cancer Society they have a program that you use their vehicles after you apply to take the patients to their appointments. You don’t have any set hours to do so as you can give as many hours and days as you wish. I do hope that some of you will look into it as a gift to not only the patient but to you I hope. I had some other things to share and it was about “Forgiving” again. I recently wrote an eight page letter to someone I love very much but we don’t communicate nor have we for a very long time, we are family and although I love this person I’d rather not associate with them any longer as I “feel” this person is harmful to my emotional well-being and I’d rather live the rest of my life not just “feeling” happy but “being” happy. This person does not offer me anything but sadness and although I shared my feelings in the letter I wrote it wasn’t one of anger as much as it was of sadness and disappointment, yet after writing this letter I felt as if a steel door had been lifted off of my shoulders, I immediately felt light and enlightened as I ended the letter with “If we never speak nor see one another again, I love you always and will keep you in my prayers.” In saying that, I forgive any and all transgressions that I felt occurred between us two, and whether they forgive me or not, it’s okay. Prayer as is Love is a healer, it’s Power is Awe-Mazing. I choose to be “Awe-Mazing” for the rest of my Life, as it’s no mistake I’m still here. I have a purpose and although each day I sometimes wonder what that still is…I believe my writing this Blog is part of it. Before I go I want to share this with you…It’s an old poem I wrote a long time ago but I want to share it, some of you may have seen it before but for those whom have not I hope you enjoy. I plan on sharing my poetry and short stories more…
Remember when? We laughed all night..Remember when? We danced all night…Remember when? We said something we didn’t mean? Remember that I’m sorry I hurt you then…Remember what our friendship means to me…Remember when we thought it wouldn’t last? Well..remember this…we’re still here! Remember…Love transcends any and all…Look what God can do….Remember that.
This evening and few friends and I were discussing the fact that how you deal with adversity whether it’s an illness, a divorce/breakup, loss of income or what have you is a personal decision on how you are going to “stand up and face and fight the situation”, it brought some topics to discuss in this week’s blog.
How our conversation began we were discussing Bobbi Kristina (Whitney Houston and Bobby Brown’s daughter), and the fact that I understand Bobby’s holding onto to both hope and faith. You got to have hope! You got to have Faith! The two go together like “Peanut Butter and Jelly”, whether you “believe” or not, for most of us we grew up with some sort of religious/faith based upbringing. Myself, I was raised Roman Catholic although Grandma was a Baptist and Grandpa was Methodist if I’m not mistaken, but all in all I was taught to get on my knees and pray and although I may not get on my knees as often as I should I do converse with God every single day without fail. Upon diagnosis of my Cancer and ever since and even before quite honestly I have depended on my faith for guidance, healing, patience and understanding. I listen, I look for signs and I believe in certain dreams especially the ones that show me my loved ones that are gone speaking to me and my clearly remembering verbatim what was said or done, later experiencing something good from that dream that I may have pushed aside. Your Destiny and Life and anything preventing you from having that said Life you want, need and deserve is between God/Your Maker and You as an individual, we come into this world alone (unless you’re a twin, triplet or quad) and you leave much the same way. I’ve experienced miracle after miracle in my life, and although as I’ve mentioned before in other blogs my life is far from perfect but it..is…Good. I’m so blessed, I’m so filled with love and although I suffer from depression and anxiety (yes, I was diagnosed with it some years ago and got progressively worse both upon and during my treatment for Breast Cancer) I know that I’ve overcome so much due to my faith and thinking positive not allowing myself to stay down on the ground feeling lost or sorry for myself, that is so easy to do. Remind yourself that you are Strong, Resilient and whatever evil that is trying to steal your joy, health and faith you won’t allow it cause deceit which is the devils tool is indeed a Liar. Only truth, hope and love prevails in our realm, don’t allow anything (Cancer, Heart Disease, Diabetes or any other illness) to weaken your resolve. Stand firm in doing what you can to heal your yourself, the doctors and medications can only do so much and boy do I have a lot of medicines and treatments I still go through but I relay heavily on God first and foremost and always pray before each visit that I’ll receive good news and that the science that my doctor depends on will be guided by Our Lord’s blessings. Faith can move mountains, I look at the stars all the time when they are present in the sky and the clouds aren’t in the way. I’m amazed and instantly I cheer up if I’m in a yucky mood because I recognize the miracle of those twinkles in the sky, I know neither you nor I can reach in our pockets and throw those majestic diamonds in the sky. It not’s happening, the moon isn’t this huge light bulb or disco ball you install in the sky, and we all know that man did indeed walk on the moon, how is that even possible? It is and it was. You know they ask people who they’d want to interview or have dinner with if they had the opportunity, I know my answer would be God, My Grandpa Louis C. Marsh and Cleopatra. I have so many unanswered questions that will perhaps be with me until I take my last breath and so I guess I’ll just have to wait, although their is no rush. 🙂
Their are many days my body doesn’t cooperate with me, not just aging but due to my treatments as well as issues from my time in the military especially my feet, our feet do a lot of heavy lifting so try to treat them well. I’m still learning to adjust to the fact lifting on my right side of my arm is a no-no due to lymphedema setting in, can’t have that and I really should wear my sleeve more but it irritates my skin (could be psychological) and I get hot on that side and with menopause/hot flashes that is a pain. Neuropathy in my feet and legs is tiresome and I’m going to swim again to help with that, many of our friends and families don’t understand that even when treatment is over and done with the residual effects still at times consume us, although not everyday for some. Please be patient with those who may deal with the issues I mentioned, be understanding and show empathy whereas it’s missing from those of us experiencing the said issues. No one wants to be sick, No one wants a life threatening and changing disease and I believe personally a lot of what ails us is what is in our environment, and until we start raising a fuss with these food distributors and government agencies that regulate these people that are shooting up our foods with hormones and chemicals we cannot pronounce much less spell we are going to continue getting sicknesses such as Cancer and Heart Disease. Pollutants and even Sugar (Yeah I said it!) is killing us, Obesity and Diabetes it’s all harming us. We can make a change and decision to live fully and more healthy for not only ourselves but those family members who love and depend on us to be around for a long time to come. I bid you all a beautifully blessed week, and want to remind you that Club Getaway in Kent, CT is offering “Kimmy’s Happy Group” and major discount if you pay a deposit by Friday, February 13th for an all inclusive weekend the weekend of July 17th, 2015. If you are interested please contact me directly at Smitten0022@yahoo.com for more information and contact Shannon at Club Getaway to give a deposit of $125 to hold your spot. I’m so excited because Club Getaway helped me come out of my shell after a long time of self-isolation as the disease of cancer can be isolating, I went to a camp for grown ups and became a kid again, all of us still have that little girl or boy inside of us, just need to be reminded. 🙂 Cheers.
I’m sorry I’ve been out of commission everyone but I couldn’t get my mind right due to the medically induced incoherency of the meds the VA Hospital prescribed to me. I’m glad to say I’m feeling better or as I’d like to say I’ve got my “OooMmmph” back.
I was stressed a bit initially because due to our immune system being compromised due to our treatments over the years as breast cancer patients and survivors when we get sick we really get sick. Yet, I handled things like a champ this time, not to say I haven’t before but this time I allowed myself to wallow a bit, after trying to fight off the all consuming fatigue, achiness and just the “yuck” feeling we get when not at our best.
Anyway, a trip to the doctor to discuss some things helped and the meds as I mentioned before but the best advice I can relay is to allow our bodies to just “Be”, rest and do the things we were brought up on. Lots of liquids especially when your appetite is off, if you have an appetite the old stand by “Campbell’s Chicken Noodle” and Ginger Ale, Crushed Ice for me as it soothes those nasty canker sores and sore throat, also I had my sheets and pillows cleaned so they were nice and cold and comfy to rest my head on. When I was less stressed and worrying about the moments ahead I felt better and slept better than I had in a bit, because that other beast Insomnia is just a pain the neck. You know what else I have been reading more than watching Television or Netflix. I mention this because for quite awhile I couldn’t focus on my reading and would lose interest and my mind would wander even with regards to my writings.
No stress, No mess has allowed me to open up my mind a little bit wider each and every day. I’m in touch with that part of myself so much so now than I have been in the past few months or even year. I attribute it to prayer, my meditation and conversations with my higher power during my showers whereas I feel most comfortable talking aloud to God. Yeah it’s weird some say but it works for me. You know truly sometimes one of my kids will say “Mom, who you talking too?”, and I realize it’s a wonderful habit I’ve been doing is talking aloud to God. It’s not some long drawn out conversation all the time, sometimes it’s “Thank You Jesus for that thought or that dream.” I spoke of gratitude in one of my blogs recently, and so I’m adding this as well “No Stress, No Mess.”
Find anything to make the moments in your day whether its a difficult day or night, think a positive thought, say a powerful prayer or mantra or just find laughter in something that is so ridiculous it makes you burst out in laughter enjoying the sound of your own gleefulness. I leave you with Love, Peace and Blessings “In and Around” your life and home. Until next time..
Health, Happiness and Faith-I look at these three as one would look at ingredients in a cake. You can’t make a cake without the right ingredients right? The same can be said for keeping your mind, body and spirit in a healthy state. Whether you’re a cancer survivor or dealing with cancer currently, or heart disease, diabetes or some other life threatening and changing issue you must find the proper recipe to feel good and stay good. For me, I’m discovering that instead of looking to lose weight and such I need to maintain a proper diet and exercise to maintain what is healthy for me, and only me. Their are times that I want what I want like Fried Chicken, French Fries and Ice Cream but….I realize that isn’t healthy for me although it tastes delicious. So, I’m doing less of what I want and more of what I need to be doing, I’m eating more salads during the week and eating popcorn, fruit, yogurt or smoothie as a treat when I want one. I also have limited my drinking of sweet drinks and alcohol and I’ve begun drinking more water with lemon or lime, also milk for my bones and teeth and also one glass of wine instead of two and three (hey, I like my wine!) I’m reading more and one book I’m enjoying now besides the Bible is “Love Walked Among Us” by Paul E. Miller. Of course I read just about anything I can get my hands on but I’m trying to read more of what “speaks” to me and will leave me pondering something to use in my everyday life and to share with others that I either know or come across in life. It’s also imperative to try to recognize things that trigger stress or anger and figure out a way to nip negativity in our response to it in the bud. I had a good conversation with my youngest daughter over the weekend with regards to coming across both people and things that will “grind your gears” (my middle daughter’s phrase) but the old saying “Kill them with kindness” works best and when you have the notion to pop them in the head just smile and continue to be who you are and not allow that person or circumstances sway you from being who you are, it’s difficult because some issues and people are just overwhelmingly a pain in the rear end. That is when your Faith steps in and reminds you that you can handle anything and with prayer and a positive mind set this is just another hurdle to jump over. You are a winner and nothing can change that. Another important thing I want to touch on is take the time to look at yourself in the mirror both before you go to bed and upon waking up in the morning and say to yourself “I love you!” let it be known to your being that you are loved by yourself as the importance of self-love is a big part of your survival and living a life on purpose. Nobody will love you as much as you can love yourself, Only God tops that. Those of us whom are fortunate enough to receive love from another is great and if others aren’t capable to loving us the way we deserve then still love them but never compromise your own well-being and happiness for them. Pray for a love like no other and continue to live life fully and with grace. Have a great week, if you are in treatment continue to stay strong and know this too shall pass and everything in life has a lesson to be learned and passed on, everything isn’t negative, their are only lessons to be learned no matter how old you are…Peace in and around you and yours.
Gratitude-the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.
It’s the second week of January of a new year, and I have so much gratitude for the life I’ve been given and that I’m living. My purpose and learning experiences are still one in the making, until the lord allows me to take my last breath. We awaken everyday with the gift to do something meaningful, kind and with a sense of purpose, but acting on it is another thing. How many of you can say that you perform this act daily upon awakening? It’s difficult at times as such as “stuff” gets in the way. It’s your job to see that it doesn’t, and remind yourself to make a change, although change is difficult it’s possible to do with practice and fortitude. We “learn” something new every single day, in every moment of our day, key is being open and attentive to what we are supposed to absorb. One of my little girl’s (ok, she’s 22 this week) well she had what should’ve been a tragic accident last year during this time and was hospitalized and her car totaled yet she survived and although she still has some residual injuries that still cause her discomfort she’s here! She’s lives her life full of gratitude for each day, overcoming impossibilities with faith and determination and a lot of help from friends and family within her church, as a parent I’m grateful that she is enfolded within the protection of not only our lord, our king and savior but she is embraced by so many in her church family that love and care for her without hesitation of any kind, they do because they can and because they are guided by something bigger and stronger than any man, woman or child of this earth.
Sometimes we take for granted the “lil” things, it’s not terrible but living a life of gratitude can change that, and watch our lives change because of it. Although stuff occurs that can turn your life upside down i.e. car accidents, cancer, depression/anxiety, heart disease, diabetes, we can live a life that has been given with plenty to be thankful for, instead of focusing on my issues with Breast Cancer I focus on my children and the fact that I’m still here for them. I find myself changing my daily routine, that has been a process but one which isn’t a resolution but one of permanent change to better both myself and those whom are present in my life. I cannot expect good people or things to happen if I’m living what I call an “Eeyore” existence. I’d much rather live like my adorable bear “Winnie the Pooh”, happy, loving with the innocence of a child.
Living with Breast Cancer has allowed me to claim “Gratitude” for so much I’ve gained since having this disease. Saying I’m sorry is much easier to roll off my tongue, expecting nothing in return, biting my tongue when I want to just scream, living with less, loving my body, mind and self just the way I am (perfect in my imperfections) and practicing patience, spending more time with God quietly in the morning or late hours confessing my fears, needs and thanks. I do hope that you’ll seek to experience the topic of this week. Be Blessed and Be Well, Please also seek to donate and volunteer for Cancer as we (the patients and survivors) appreciate it so much, I couldn’t have done so without it.
How many of you have experienced Miracles and Signs in your life? I’m sure quite a few if not all of you reading this right now. I, for one believe in Miracles and have since an early age, I believe those that we love and who are now departed send us signs on occasion you just have to be open to receiving their “light”, I say that because those we love never truly leave us, they are in our hearts and we think of them often, sometimes daily. The mourning turns to memories of times past, the pleasantries outweighing the negatives.
Isn’t it a gift to know that our loved ones are still present? Perhaps in spirit yet also in our hearts, the love is so strong it brings tears to your eyes, you smile just remembering something that you both experienced together or maybe your last embrace. That is why you never go to bed angry, holding onto that negativity, nor leave this earth carrying a grudge and anger, try to remember to live in “Peace and Love” letting it ooze from your pores, like a ray of light, allow all the “good” to come forth don’t allow it to stay stagnant and hidden. The world has changed and not for the better unfortunately yet we all play a part in the outcomes of our individual lives as well as collectively the state of the world. It’s “ugly” right now, but that doesn’t mean it can’t become “beautiful” again, free will, choice’s and doing all play a part.
2015 can be an “Awe-Inspiring” and “Awe-Mazing” year, as with the power of Pray, Love and Kindness we can change the world, it can be better for not only you and I but for our children, and their children. We owe it to them to find a way to challenge any and all things that cause strife and negativity within our communities and in our own homes, if you cannot find peace and tranquility inside your own home then something is terribly wrong and you need to change it, even if that means changing yourself. The first step in doing so is making an “intention”-a thing intended; an aim or plan. (Webster’s Dictionary) then act on it, don’t ponder and procrastinate about it, just aim to do it and build upon it. Example being for myself, I’m on a mission to lose 25lbs this year, and I’m not going to kill myself doing it, I’m following a diet that is both healthy and recommended by my physician that will take the weight off the right way by changing the way I eat, that means less fried food which I love and more baked and broiled, less sugar in my coffee, more fresh juices and water and adding more vegetables instead of carbs, I also know I need to get back in the gym, I had a good thing going then I stopped, simply put I got lazy. In doing so I’m ruining my health, I have more aches and pain that I shouldn’t be experiencing, and I’ve also put myself at risk for reoccurrence of my cancer and I have too much to live for to further exasperate my METS, many of us with METS have lived with it for over 20 years and I’m just in my 5th year so I have to surpass that 20 year mark and my mind is made up, Living Fully, Healthy and Gracefully is a priority no one can do for me. Many of you many know I lost my younger sister tragically over a year ago, and she has been very present in my life and her twin’s life since her passing in the form of a ladybug. Can you dig it?! A Lady…Bug….Incredible, this delicate insect seemingly which is really a beetle. The name lady bug finds its origins in the middle ages when this beetle was dedicated to the Virgin Mary and called the “beetle of our lady.” This name links the ladybug to spiritual ideals and religious devotion. This tiny little beetle brings with it a powerful message. Because the life cycle of the adult ladybug is short it teaches us how to release worries and enjoy our lives to the fullest. When it appears in our life it is telling us to “let go and let God.” Seen often as a messenger of promise, the ladybug reconnects us with the joy of living. Fear and joy can not co-exist. We need to release our fears and return to love – this is one of the messages that the ladybug brings to us.
Ladybug teaches us how to restore our trust and faith in the great spirit. When the ladybug appears, it is telling us to get out of our own way and allow the great spirit to enter into our lives. (weareonespirit)
So, In essence I’m asking you to be aware of the miracles that just….happen. I don’t believe in coincidence anymore I believe that God allows certain things for you and yours to experience, through signs that are often unexplainable. It come via a Dream, Certain Deja Vu moments/Aha’s I call them too, and from something as simple as a rainbow to a strong yet small beetle called a LadyBug.
Angela Bofill is one of my favorite vocalist’s and she has a song called “Angel of the Night” and it’s fitting for the end to this week’s blog…and I dedicate this to my Baby Boy Christopher Aaron and all of the nieces and nephews of my late sister because she loved them all as if they were her own children. I have heard there’s an angel
There’s an angel of the night
Far thru time she has traveled
And she’s watchin’ out of sight
She knows, let her guide you
Listen if you can, you know she’s wise
And she’ll find you
Try to understand
In your heart she’ll be hiding
For she’s with you constantly
And somewhere from the darkness
She will slip into your dreams
You will know by the stillness
In the air you’ll feel she’s near
And if you will it
Maybe she’ll appear
She’s an angel
She’s an angel of the night
She’s an angel
She’s a guardian of love