Saturday, May 28, 2011

Heard it's your birthday.....

Birthdays are fascinating. A day set apart from the ordinary day to celebrate with family, friends and even a waiter named Jim. As the number of candles on the birthday cake increase, so does the perplexing wonder of how it's possible for minutes to turn so quickly into years

The statement, “where has the time gone,” is cliché at best, yet enormously truthful. As a teenager I remember thinking time was plentiful, sometimes even ticking by at a slow pace depending on the event ahead. Joining a new club this month, I’m especially aware of the rapid speed of time in more life lived behind me than what might possibly lie ahead. Despite the awareness, it’s still of very little concern to me.

My age has never been an issue for me. In fact, most of the time my husband remembers my age before I am able to recount the exact number. I believe how you feel on the inside and conduct your life on the outside doesn’t have to match your real age, giving minimal value to the number.

What I do value is the countless number of outrageous blessings in those years. Some of mine are; growing up in a simple farm home abundant with life lessons that resonate in my current life. Parents I admire and seven siblings I can’t imagine life without. Friends from high school turned into a marriage graced by two amazing children, making a family. A circle of life completed by trusted friends and devoted extended family loving me no matter what. It’s a plethora of blessings that brings me to my knees in humble awe.

It’s only fair to say, there has been disappointments, sad days, even a few “why me,” but they have been matched by miracles that lack worldly description and healing found only in the divine.

It’s true, it was my birthday and now I’m 50 years old! Probably won't forget how old I am this year, unless I hear the song “Dancing Queen.” Then age becomes irrelevant and with arms crisscrossing in the air, we give any day reason to celebrate.

So for the next three hundred sixty four days until my next birthday, Be The Change!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Change, change, and more change

Three days of clear blue skies and temperatures above fifty degrees, hopefully makes it safe to say spring is here. It seemed like a very long wait this year.

Spring has a way of ushering in change. The season changes the look of trees, grass and plants into something new from the unsightly picture of dormancy. It holds graduations, college to home re-locations and summer activities, which can change disciplined polished routines into drive-thru dinners and later than usual bedtimes.

Change is a constant part of life whether we like it or not. Anything from simple changes found in the monthly turn of the calendar to the more complex like life altering changes due to illness. Each offering an opportunity to redefine priorities based on a broad spectrum of minor to major changes involved with every changed season.

Another drastic change is with social media like Facebook, which is a change that didn’t come easy for me. My first communication language is verbal words. suggests we can even use social media to choose a doctor. Now that’s a change! It's fair to say, doing necessary research in the comfort of your home does lend an ease to fact finding tasks and allows the required time to make critical decisions in a relaxed environment.

Permitting change to make you or your circumstances better than the day before directs hope to cover anxiety that sometimes exits because of change. Whether it's a new month on the calendar, a changing season, or a health concern that leads to social media for answers.

Change can be good, lending a fresh perspective to change our view; for instance the look of yellow daffodils blooming in the middle of a concrete jungle. The odd occurrence helps you realize change makes other things possible.

“Like” Be The Change on Facebook…. Be The Change!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Wonder, understand, believe....always hope

Read a new blog posted at Be The Change website.

"Do what you can, with what you have, where you are" -Theodore Roosevelt

Friday, May 6, 2011

What do you call your Mother?

Mother, Mom, Mommy, Mum, maybe even Mumz. Whatever your term of endearment for that woman who loves you more profoundly than any Hallmark card can describe, make it special. Consider the fact there is no other relationship like mother and child. It’s a gift sealed in more than DNA, divinely created by one of the other.

My relationship with my one and only dramatically shifted when I was nineteen. As my Mom battled cancer, I began to comprehend and appreciate her role in my life in a renewed way. She died when I was barely twenty seven and now, I’m close to living more of my life without her than with her.

There isn’t a day I’m not reminded of my Mom’s gentle way and the powerful impressions they left. I recall the extreme gratitude in her thank you. I remember her small hands washing clothes, ironing or at the sewing machine. Her prideful face as she canned fresh vegetables out of her garden. The smile she gave requesting a little 7-up on special occasions and the rhythmic way she would follow my Dad on the dance floor.

My Mom was self-less, hard working, faithful and always, always kind. She molded my thoughts and instilled values in me that are permanent threads woven into my non-tangible quilt. She showed me what real faith is and that it is possible to endure. Her spirit simplified the complicated aspects of unconditional love, all of which expanded our relationship beyond typical boundaries.

My Mom’s commitment to family speaks in the shadows of Be The Change. This blog entry is dedicated to my Mom and the others whose home isn’t allowing cards or phone calls. In honor of them this Mothers Day weekend, call your one and only her special name. Have a conversation between two hearts only the two of you know the words.

It becomes a story, which lasts forever. Might even Be The Change.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Leaving on an airplane

Everyone has a story about airplane travel. Anything from awkward barefoot security encounters, the missed connecting flight to long waits for luggage. Including highlights such as aching knees from bumping into the seat in front of you or the intentional lean to the right because of the sleepy stranger seated at your left.

Whatever the tolerated situation maybe most airline passengers don’t endure what the physically and medically challenged traveler does. A travel check list is long enough without the need to add wheelchair or ventilator as must have items.

Traveler, Carrie Salberg can not be without certain medical items such as those two, due to her muscular dystrophy diagnosis. A Star Tribune investigators article says in January, aboard a return flight to Minneapolis from New Orleans, Carrie Salberg was asked to get off the plane. A battery brought on board by her nurse, which had a certificate of compliance, caused serious inconveniences. Things were done correctly, yet still not enough. Interesting to note, her flight to New Orleans from Minneapolis went without issue, even included a free first class upgrade.

In a small way, I can identify with medically challenged passengers like Carrie Salberg. Although only traveling once with Michael by airplane during his fragile medical years, I understand the complexity involved with adding critical details. Along with the normal vacation preparations others have, that one trip required extra phone calls, particular doctor appointments and many additional considerations other travelers don’t have.

Michael received air travel approval from his medical team but it came with a promise to have a medical letter with us at all times and act in accordance to it, if necessary. The letter explained Michael’s rare disease and said should he experience stroke symptoms in-flight, parents will alert flight crew of an emergency medical situation. Airplane will be expected to land immediately. Right before our trip I saw myself banging on the cockpit door yelling, “Land this plane, STAT!” Fortunately, it was only a dream.

Even something normal like attending a school field trip required extra time and details to assure Michael’s special wheelchair needs were accommodated. It’s surprising the number of locations, which are not easily “handicap accessible” despite the signs suggesting otherwise.

Be The Change asks you to demonstrate large doses of patience and tolerance for physically and medically challenged travelers. Let’s not add to an already extensive list of concerns. Be the one who holds the door in assistance and offers a helpful hand. Always give a smile instead of a stare and Be The Change!