Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Healthy Foods for our Furry Family

I was raised with the belief system that pets are furry family members. Therefore, it's important that my little man, Samson, a mini-dachshund, lives the best life he possibly can. When he was a baby he weighed a mere pound or so, was the runt of the pack, and immediately made my heart melt. I, like any good mom, kept a watchful eye on him and worried when he would accidentally slide into a wall when he was playing or leap from high sofas since he thought he was Superdog and could fly.

One day when I had taken him to grandma's to play with his new BFF, Einstein, he decided he would run out into the road. All I remember is seeing my little Bean (one of his many, many nicknames) run into the street. I don't think my brain really thought this through as much as my heart just made me do it, but I ran out into the street, dove onto the asphalt and grabbed him, saving him and banging myself up. Saving him from what, I'm not sure, since we were in a quiet neighborhood with zero cars anywhere at all, but my mom mind was going full speed and I needed to save my baby.

Then there was the time he decided to go swimming by himself. Sambean is a long weenie dog with very, very short legs. He does not float well. We had to get him a doggie life jacket for summer so he could go swimming safely with us. He loves the pool and one day, before the concept kicked in of always wearing his jacket, he decided to go for a swim. I had just gotten done at work, was in full suit attire, and not planning on taking a dip anytime soon. Until he did. There I was jumping in the pool to save my little man, high heels and all. Looking back I probably overdid the whole saving thing again since I could have just leaned down and grabbed him, but time was a-wasting and his life flashed before my eyes.

Ween is a little lover. He is all about the kisses and the hugs and the love. He puts his little legs around your neck and then sticks his face and throat right on your face so you have no choice but to kiss him or suffocate and die trying. As he got older he started to develop allergies (or reactions) to who knows what. His little happy spirit was crushed with the constant need to lick his paws raw which led me to constantly put those horrible cone things around his head. He's long though, so he would just finagle his body into a little pretzel and keep at it. I had no idea what to do until one night in school when someone mentioned Wysong. It's one of those companies you would never know about because they don't spend their money on advertising, but rather good products for their animals. It's an all natural, super healthy company that's been around for 30 years and specializes in food and products for optimal animal health. They have a wide variety of products for cats, dogs, horses, ferrets, and even people.

I gave them a try and his allergies went away almost immediately, as did all the vet bills. Over the years I would sometimes give him a special treat now and then for Christmas and sure enough, those problems would be back. When I keep him on Wysong he's healthy as can be so I've stopped all other products entirely. Also, which I love the most, he's in great health. He's almost 8 and looks like he's 2. His fur is still shiny and deep brown, his eyes are still clear and free of disease, he plays like he's a puppy still,  and has strong, healthy bones.

Wysong is more expensive than your regular dog kibble, but it's worth every cent. I figure I have the choice of either putting my money towards unnecessary vet bill, after vet bill, after vet bill, or food that I'll have to buy regardless. I opt for the food and for a better, healthier life for my little man. If you're interested in checking them out the link is below. They offer different sizes of products and some sample bags as well. Most importantly, they offer a better life for your pet.

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Saturday, March 26, 2011

Breaking Free from the Broken Record

"It's never to late to be free. Too often we make our own cages. Of the mind. Or the heart. We have the key to unlock them, we only need the will to use it. Set your mind free. Make your own decisions. Unlock your heart, love freely. Unlock your mind, live freely."

It's easy to get caught up in our heads.We often get stuck on thoughts that could seemingly be nothing until we put it on repeat and suddenly it's like a broken record, playing over and over again.  We forget that a thought is simply that, a thought. It requires no action, no emotion, no internal debate, yet we do all of those things because we thought about something and held onto it.

A teacher of mine once said that the best way to deal with thoughts is to separate yourself from them. To step back and imagine that you're looking out at yourself watching them pass you by, one by one, like a movie. The key is to learn not to react. I once read somewhere that to truly see and understand you must imagine you are on a train at night, looking out a window. You can see everything outside, passing you by, and you can see your reflection inside, still and quiet. You're an observer of two worlds, neither one more than the other, yet both a part of you, and you get to decide which one you partake in and how at each moment.

I speak from experience on the broken record piece. I know how it feels to hold onto something, to let it drag you down. I'm not saying it's easy to snap yourself out of it just like that, but what I am saying is that with practice, patience, and most importantly awareness, you can free yourself much quicker. You can even see the lesson you were meant to learn from the experience.

When I was having a hard time with something I promised myself I would work on being grateful for all the good things in my life. Each morning I would come up with five things to be thankful for and each night I would do the same. It started out easy..."I'm thankful for my family, friends, all of my limbs, my dog, and a job that pays my bills."

As time went on I had to dig a little deeper. "I'm thankful for...electricity, indoor plumbing, air conditioning in this desert I live in, my school, and coconut water." Pretty soon I had covered everything important and semi-important and I had to really get creative. "I'm thankful for, um, Google (to answer all my random questions therefore preventing me from driving to the library and spending countless hours searching for one thing with the Dewey Decimal System), a washing machine (so I don't have to beat my clothes on rocks in a river), the iPod (so I no longer have to use a walkman/discman and haul around twelve zillion CD's in my car), Orlando Bloom (no explanation needed), and deodorant (because it had to have been a very smelly world before that came along)." Before I knew it I was in a good mood, laughing at the ridiculousness of what I was thankful for, yet still being very thankful and appreciative of all of those things.

I've practiced the thought observation and I have to admit, it's kind of awesome once you get the hang of it and fully understand. You feel so...free, so very in control of whatever you truly need at that time. You are no longer a slave to your thoughts, you are the watcher of them, like a shepherd herding your flock of various ideas, concepts, perceptions, and values.

One truly great leader of this process called Mindfulness is Jon Kabet-Zinn. He is an artist of awareness and I highly recommend his work if you're interested.

The next time you're mind is acting like a rusted wheel, unwilling to let you move on to a different subject, take a deep breath and try and see yourself watching this idea, this thought, pass you by. If at first you don't succeed, don't freak out. Nothing important happens overnight. Just keep trying and keep breathing and eventually you will find yourself being free, one moment, one thought, at a time.

A Single Sentence

I love words.  I love how they can make you feel something so intense, you didn't even know you had it in you. I love how they make you look at things in a new way.  I love how a simple sentence can change the entire course of your day or outlook, hopefully in a good way.

When I was teaching yoga (I had to take a break due to school overload) I would always start my classes with a specific idea in mind. I would read to my students at the beginning and end of class in an attempt to bring them back to themselves, make them see themselves, their day, in a new light. I would literally search for hours until I found exactly what I was looking for, that thing that felt right for that day. That or I would write something myself. I used everything from The Prophet to Dr. Suess stories. Inspiration can truly be found anywhere as long as you know what you're looking for.

I was reminiscing on some of my favorites and wanted to share. A lot of students loved these and sometimes would even ask if they could take my notes home so they could remember them. I loved those moments, when I knew I had truly helped someone, somehow, even if it was just a little bit. I hope these inspire you as well.

On Joy and Sorrow, taken from The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran
Your joy is your sorrow unmasked. And the selfsame well from which your laughter rises was oftentimes filled with your tears. And how else can it be?
The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain. Is not the cup that holds your wine the very cup that was burned in the potter's over?
And is not the lute that soothes your spirit, the very wood that was hollowed with knives?
When you are joyous, look deep into your heart and your shall find it is only that which has given you sorrow that is giving you joy.

"All men should strive to learn before they die, what they are running from, and to, and why."

"The important thing is this: To be able at any moment to sacrifice what we are for what we could become." - Charles Dubois

Creation: A Sioux Story
The Creator gathered all of Creation and said, "I want to hide something from the humans until they are ready for it. It is the realization that they can create their own reality."
The eagle said, "Give it to me, I will take it to the moon."
The Creator said, "No. One day they will go there and find it."
The salmon said, "I will bury it on the bottom of the ocean."
"No. They will go there too."
The buffalo said, "I will bury it in the Great Plains."
The Creator said, "They will cut into the skin of the earth and find it even there."
Grandmother mole, who lives in the breast of Mother Earth, and who has no physical eyes but sees with spiritual eyes, said, " Put it inside of them."
And the Creator said, "It is done."

"In order to get from what was to what will be, you must go through what is." - Anonymous

"When you're going through hell...keep going." - Winston Churchill

(Funny yoga quote) "Blessed are the flexible, for they shall not be bent out of shape." - Anon

"And the day came when the risk to remain tight in the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom." - Anais Nin

Maybe we should develop a Crayola bomb as our next secret weapon.  A happiness weapon.  A beauty bomb.  And every time a crisis developed, we would launch one.  It would explode high in the air - explode softly - and send thousands, millions, of little parachutes into the air.  Floating down to earth - boxes of Crayolas.  And we wouldn't go cheap, either - not little boxes of eight.  Boxes of sixty-four, with the sharpener built right in.  With silver and gold and copper, magenta and peach and lime, amber and umber and all the rest.  And people would smile and get a little funny look on their faces and cover the world with imagination.  ~Robert Fulghum

"Let us not look back in anger or forward in fear, but around in awareness." - James Thurber

A Pencil Maker Told the Pencil 5 Important Lessons
1. Everything you do will always leave a mark.
2. You can always correct the mistakes you make.
3. What is important is what is inside of you.
4. In life, you will undergo painful sharpenings which will make you better pencil.
5. To be the best pencil, you must allow yourself to be held and guided by the hand that holds you.

"I love the light for it shows me the way, yet I endure the dark for it shows me the stars." - Og Mandino

"Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me." - Seymour Mill & Jill Jackson

"Peace. It does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble, or hard work. It means to be in the midst of those things, and still be calm in your heart." - Anonymous

"People travel to wonder at the height of mountains, at the huge waves of the sea, at the long courses rivers run, at the vast compass of the ocean, at the circular motion of the stars; and they pass themselves by without wondering."

The Bear, The Fire, and The Snow - Shel Silverstein

"I live in fear of the snow," said the bear. "Whenever it's here, be sure I'll be there. Oh, the pain and the cold, when one's bearish and old. I live in fear of the snow."

"I live in fear of the fire," said the snow. "Whenever it comes then it's time I must go. With it's yellow lick flames leaping higher and higher, I live in fear of the fire."

"I live in fear of the river," said the fire. "It can drown all my flames anytime it desires, and the thought o the wet makes me sputter and shiver. I live in fear of the river."

"I live in fear of the bear," said the river. "It can lap me right up, don't you know?" While a mile away you can hear the bear say, "I live in fear of the snow."

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Can't Get Them Outta My Head

Short blog. Just two songs I'm addicted to right now and can't stop playing in my car, at the gym, at work, on my computer (you get the idea), so I thought you might enjoy them as well.

Be The One- Moby


Tuesday, March 22, 2011

A Guide to Recognizing Your Sole

Every color, bump, callus and curve on your foot tells a story of your health. This story, when read by a
trained Reflexologist, can lead to a healthier, more balanced life through different pressure techniques
applied at certain reflex zones of the foot.  Reflexology itself is described as an alternative medical
approach to overall improved health and well being.  It dates back to ancient Egypt and is commonly
used in India and China with it now becoming more mainstream in the Unites States as the demand for
alternative medicine grows.

The bottom of each foot holds thousands of nerve endings that correlate with various systems including
the nervous system, immune system and lymphatic system. These nerve endings are then grouped into
different reflex zones which allow the reflexologist to determine what health issues might be at hand and to
literally work on them from the bottom up. By applying pressure to certain reflex points, where the
reflexologist has determined an area of concern, the body can begin to relax and heal itself. 

Benefits of reflexology include reduced stress, relief of aches and pains, improved digestion and sleep, and
overall mental and physical well being. A good piece of advice is to remember that a reflexologist cannot
diagnose an ailment or provide a cure.  They can, however,  relax the body and improve circulation which
brings a balanced state back to the body.  Many people have moved to this alternative approach at healing
having reported great improvement in their health. It has become much easier to locate a reflexologist as
reflexology clinics are emerging all over the states and more and more massage therapists are adding this to
their skill set. Now might be right time for you to allow your feet to tell their story of your health and

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Sunday, March 20, 2011

Have a Little Faith

Have a Little Faith

Hey there
Hey there
Look at me
I’m what you’re missing
What you need
Look out
Look in
Look at your soul
I’m all around
I make you whole
I’m in your heart
I’m in your mind
I’m in the places that you hide
And let me in
Dont be afraid
Give in
Give in
I’m what you want
And what you need
Is simply
To believe

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I Know

Friday, March 18, 2011

Falling Down Stairs and Kidnapping Friends

With all of the sad things going on in the world I thought we could all use a good laugh. Have at it!

The Fall

Last week at work I had the pleasure of accidentally entertaining my fellow co-workers when I took a little tumble down the stairs. I didn't actually trip on anything as much as I believe Karma pushed me down the stairs. I was joking around at people not using our 20 step staircase at work and instead using the ancient elevator. Two seconds after that I fell. The fall itself felt (and apparently looked) like it took five minutes when it should've only taken a few seconds. 

During my fall the following took place: First, I somehow handed my tea mug to my co-worker so that it would be safe...love my tea. Then I realized that the other associates that share our building were having a morning huddle 20 feet away on the first floor and instead of worrying about hurting myself, or you know, dying, I was worried about them hearing me fall like a fool down the stairs. I attempted to recover at each step, but instead ended up falling down on only the left side of my body like some kind of an odd human bouncy ball.

I held on to my purse and my documents as I fell and once I neared the bottom I attempted to pass them off to my manager who was trying not to die laughing, but wasn't succeeding. When I finally hit bottom I promptly sat up straight, mentally assessed the damage, and tried very hard to pretend like that didn't just happen. Then I busted out laughing while whining as everything on the left side of me started to ache. It went something along the lines of "Ha ha ha..ouch...ha ha...that's gonna bruise...ha ha ha...*whimper*..." and so on.

I later found out that the team downstairs did indeed hear the fall and proceeded to joke about me (not my other coworkers, no, just me) potentially falling, when in all reality they had no idea I had actually fallen to, what could've have been, my almost death. Instead they innocently thought it was a box one of us dropped. I tried to fall silently but clearly it didn't work. I'm fine and came out mostly unscathed thanks to old carpeted stairs. At least everyone got to start the week out with a good, long laugh.

Moral of the story: Next time you think about making fun of anything be prepared for Karma to kick you in the behind promptly and efficiently. 

The Kidnapping

My dear, dear friend was getting married and it was time to plan her bachelorette party. There is something you have to know about me and my groups of friends...we like having ridiculous amount of fun doing ridiculous things while simultaneously embarrassing the heck out of ourselves. It doesn't matter if it's a baby shower, bridal shower, girls nights out, or just a regular day driving in the car. One day I'll go into more detail with some stories, but for now just know that what I'm about to tell you is fairly "normal" for us.

For this special occasion I knew I wanted to do something to throw her off. I have participated in a bachelor party kidnapping and often think back fondly on the hilariousness of that, so I decided it was
time to throw another body in the back of my SUV.

It all started with a friendly ransom note to the bride-to-be to let her know when to be ready. I also informed her mom of the situation since the kidnapping would take place at her house and I didn't want her to call 911. My brilliant friend Jess helped to plan out the details to follow, so I can't take all the credit for this beautifully crazy plan.

We had mapped out everything before hand, to make sure all of us kidnappers were on the same page. We decided we would be the scary people from the horror movie Deliverance, but with a modern day twist. We even had a script all figured out.

First we put on bandanas and sunglasses to assume the proper identities. We put my small dogs giant teddy bear, that he slobbers on, in the back of the car as a cushion for her head and to basically just gross her out. The captive has to have some torture, right? I loaded the Dueling Banjo song from Deliverance on my iPod and set it to repeat. We pulled up in the driveway, banjo music on blast, and threw the car doors open. We ran in the house, blindfolded her, tied her arms behind her back, and made our escape. I hardly saw her brother, who had no idea of this event, sitting on the sofa staring at me with a mixed look of concern and awesomeness. Her mom cutely waived at us and told us to have a nice time.

As all of this is happening the innocent little neighbor kid next door was staring at us. He completely stopped playing with his ball and just watched us, unsure of what exactly was going on in his quiet, peaceful neighborhood. We put the bride in the back of the SUV, and by back I do mean the area where luggage, groceries, and of course bodies, would go. Then the two Jessica's (my fellow kidnappers) did a lovely little Four Square kind of a dance around the car to the banjo music while I took numerous pictures, thus scarring the little neighbor kid for life, I'm sure.

To keep things confusing for her I drove like a maniac, pulling into random neighborhoods to throw her off, backing up, stopping suddenly and pretending to stop and pick up another person that we were kidnapping as well. The other person consisted of nothing except Jess, who has some amazing sound effects. Still, it through her off for a bit. Jess also makes a very convincing crazy hillbilly which made the whole ride that much more interesting. We did the whole soooo-eee pig call at will, randomly shouted out things we thought the Deliverance people would have said, and interrogated her as to what type of a drink she would like for the evening to come.

At one point we decided we needed to up the ante a little, so we stopped and got some food to feed our little captive. We got some of that canned cheese stuff, crackers, and chocolate donut holes. The final destination was The Melting Pot (see how nice we really are?) so this served as a good pre-dinner course of what was to come, kind of.  First we gave her the crackers and cheese. Then we switched it up on her without mentioning anything and gave her the chocolate donut hole which pretty much freaked her out since she wasn't expecting that at all. Not part of the plan, but it was pretty funny.

The whole time we were driving I was a little afraid that some of the other cars on the freeway might notice someone bound in the back of my car, especially since we were playing the banjo music, yelling, and flailing our arms around, and that they might just call the cops on us. Luckily they didn't notice or they were too scared by our insanity to even consider it. Finally we arrived at The Melting Pot, got out, and left her Ashley in the car.

Then we came back, got her out, and surprised her with a nice fondue meal. I'm pretty sure she thought the kidnapping was worth it.

Good food and great memories, what could be better? Maybe not being in the back of a car for an hour.

Next time we'll keep that in mind.

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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Pay it Forward

I've never run out of clean water. I've never not had electricity for more than 2 hours, tops. I live in a state where the worst thing that mother nature can throw at us is a lot of sunshine resulting in a lot of sunburns. No earthquakes, floods, tornado's, tsunamis, or hurricanes.

Every time a disaster hits we see it, we hear about it, and we maybe, kind of feel it. Japan was just devastated and things are not looking up. This time I feel it slightly more than I have with the other ones because a friend of mine from school lives there. She's fine right now and I hope with all my heart that her and her family will be safe throughout all of this.

Pay it forward is a concept taken from a movie of the same title where a little boy randomly picks three strangers to help. In return for his help they each have to help three strangers. They must also pass the message on that those three people have to reach out to an additional three. If you're doing the math here you can just go ahead and stop... I'll make this easy for you. The more people you help, the more people they can help until suddenly everyone is helping everyone else. It's an exceptional movie and an even more exceptional concept. It doesn't even just have to apply to people. Help an animal, pick up trash, plant a tree...do three goods things any way that you can. It all adds up.

Right now you can help Japan. Living Social is offering a 100% match to contributions made to the American Red Cross. You donate $5 and they match it. I don't work for them, but I did just see it and I think it's a good start. It's easy, simple and you still have 10 hours to participate. Even if this "deal" runs out you can always reach out and help in other ways.

So right now I'm paying it forward with you. I donated and am now telling you. It's you're turn. Find three people (or more) and pass on this blog, link, or anything that you think would help make a difference. Help while you can, when you can, because you never know when you might need help yourself.


I Know

I know

In my dreams I see a field
Of a land that’s far away
In a country I have been to
In a place I long to stay
Where my daydreams often wander
Making my pulse race and rise
Everyday I’m closer, closer
To the soil I desire

In my heart I feel a sorrow
That I’ve buried deep below
For the past that I have chosen
And the seeds that I have sown
In my prayers I ask for answers
What to do next, where to go
How to break free from the prison
Where I’ve locked away my soul

In my mind I know my purpose
Though my logic makes me question
Such a reason for my being
Why I feel I need permission
Though this passion burns inside me
Thoughts of leaping leave me waiting
Every moment spent in wondering
Is a moment I am wasting

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The Diving Bell, The Butterfly, and My Dad

A while back I rented the movie The Diving Bell and the Butterfly. What I had known, prior to renting it, was that it was true, involved a former magazine editor who had a stroke and became paralyzed, and then wrote a book, dying shortly after. What I did not know was how much it reflected my own life which would then spur me to realize things I had not been aware of prior.

I won't ruin it for you in case you want to watch it, but will give you this brief summary. The story is of Jean-Dominique Baub, the French editor of Elle Magazine. He was taking a drive one day with his young son when he suffered a stroke causing him to become paralyzed with only the ability to blink. He was in a nursing home for about a year and a half and during that time wrote a book with the assistance of an "interpreter", for lack of a better word. The book was published, became a hit, and eventually was made into the movie. It chronicles memories of his life, his family, what he missed and took for granted but didn't realize until he could no longer enjoy life as he had prior.

The movie is exceptional. It is also exceptionally sad. My purpose here is not to depress anyone, but instead tell a little story and to help you possibly see your life in a new and grateful way.

When I was a baby my dad was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis or MS. It hit him hard and quick and by the time I was 3 he was paralyzed and could only blink. This movie really got me due to those reasons, but it also made me realize things I hadn't and should've a very long time ago.

My dad's life was vastly different than Jean-Dominique, except when it came to the inability to move, speak, or function as a normal person. My dad was in a nursing home for five years while doctors tried to figure out a cure, although he had MS for a total of nine years, with my mom caring for him at home the first few until it became too difficult. During this time MS wasn't very well known and no one really knew what to do. My dad could also not speak and we used the blinking method to communicate as well, however, I was little and didn't really have the patience to "talk" for long. Instead I would help the nurses, make friends with the nice elderly people and play games all over the nursing home since nothing was off limits to "John's little girl". We were there every day, several times a day, for those five years.

Communicating through blinking is a long and tedious process. It was also the 80's then and I found it surprising that in the time Jean-Dominique used that same method it was years and years later and that was still as advanced as they'd gotten. The thing that got me was hearing and really seeing for the first time how hard that life was. My dad had to live if for a much longer time than Jean-Dominique and to see what a challenge it was made me realize things I hadn't before.

I realized how little my life really sucked or just how easy I really had it when I thought I didn't. How nothing I have gone through or dealt with could ever compare to what he had to do every single day. How I needed to appreciate life more and all the things I am able to do and just simply quit complaining. It was a good wake up call to start living my life appropriately.

Below is the poem I wrote after I saw the movie and had all of these realizations. Life is to be lived, even in the difficult moments, and one must always remember that it really could be worse and we should never, never take for granted what we have been given or the strength inside of us to make ourselves and our lives better.

I Have Never Suffered

I thought my pain was endless
That I was empty, hollow
Destined to suffer for eternity
Until last night
Until I realized
I’ve never
Never suffered like you

My shadow filled days will never compare to your pitch black nights
And days
And weeks
And months
That never ended
That lasted for years
That were still, quiet, frozen
That you couldn't escape

How you only had one thing to look forward to
Every. Single. Day.
One moment
And when it was time to say goodbye for the day
The Nothing returned
The emptiness of a heart still beating
A brain still thinking
But a body unmoving
Trapped in your own existence
Never to hold your daughter again
Never to kiss your wife
Alone in a way no one could feel but you

I will never truly understand

I thought my pain was endless
That I was empty, hollow
Destined to suffer for eternity
Until last night
Until I realized
I’ve never
Never suffered like you

My empty heart will never compare to your broken, shattered soul
To a dream that ended before it began
To a life unimagined
To a love so rare and true that no one
No one
Will ever fill that void
Or ever make you whole

I never understood how alone you really were
And still are
And may always be
How you sacrificed it all without question
Without regret
And how somehow you feel guilty for something you couldn’t control
Something you didn't ask for
Something you bravely never walked away from
And freely sacrificed everything
That a normal life would resemble
For us
For him
And now, for her

I will never truly understand

I thought my pain was endless
That I was empty, hollow
Destined to suffer for eternity
Until last night
Until I realized
I’ve never
Never suffered like you

My emotional numbness will never compare to your heart breaking aloneness
To losing yourself to age
And time
And feeling like a burden to others
Where you can no longer see well
Or hear well
And can barely get around your own house
And how you stay, I know this, you stay
For me
Because I am selfish and can't let you go

I will never truly understand

I thought my pain was endless
That I was empty, hollow
Destined to suffer for eternity
Until last night
Until I realized
I’ve never
Never suffered like them

I will never know the stillness of a man immobilized by his own body
Unable to decide for himself
Unable to take care of his family
Unable to do anything
But blink

I will never know the emptiness of a woman who lost everything she had ever wanted
Who sacrificed it all
And who waited patiently
For years
Until hope ran out and she was truly alone
Because there was only one person for her
And I know that nothing
Not even time
Will heal her heart

I will never know the aloneness of a woman who’s lived for nearly a century
Who’s seen her best friend and lifelong companion pass on
Who has aged so gracefully
And been so independent
Until now
When time has started to set in
And slowed her
Changed her
Made her begin to fade away

I will never truly understand these things. I have felt but a fraction of what they have lived. I have seen nothing.

And they may never truly know how exceptional they really are           
How amazing
And strong
And brave beyond measure
And how wonderful they are
How so few would do what they have done
How most would have given up
How practically no one would have been so selfless
So kind
So loving
To stay
To try
To do it all
For me