Friday, May 11, 2012

Heavy heart

When my dear friend Caley is feeling down, she changes her Facebook profile photo to one in which she is looking away from the camera.

As for me, I tend not to blog as much. It's almost as if I cannot think of anything to say or I don't have the energy to say it.

The past few weeks have been stormy and uncertain for many people we know and love.
  • Some friends announced their separation after nearly 22 years of marriage
  • Mike's sister continues to struggle in her marriage and it's hard to be so far away from her
  • Our beloved pastor and friend Laurie was diagnosed with breast cancer
  • My maternal uncle is embroiled in family issues and my mom is finding herself in the middle
  • My aunt who has been battling melanoma for years is in the hospital with a brain bleed and a new tumor in her brain while her husband (my dad's brother) continues to struggle with Alzheimer's 
  • One of our visiting priests and a wonderful man (who recently offered a blessing for the sisters at a Catholic church in Portland), Father Leo, suffered a stroke last weekend
  • Another dear friend is waiting to find out about a possible cancer diagnosis
Beyond that, I'm on the edges of two different conflict situations in different groups, trying to find some kind of resolution. My heart is feeling heavy with the anguish of others.

As you know, I'm an optimist at heart and I believe in the power of hope. In the midst of these difficult times I've seen blessings as well.

Mike's sister just finished a certificate program teaching English to foreign language learners and has a job at Cambridge University this summer, which will be wonderful for both her and her students. I feel immensely hopeful that Laurie's cancer has been caught early enough and will be treated effectively (even though the process will not be fun). Father Leo is improving daily and we hope he will make a full recovery.

And the hummingbirds give me hope and inspiration. The week we found out about Laurie's cancer, I saw two hummingbirds on two separate occasions, Laurie saw one in her backyard, and our Catholic lay leader, Kathy, saw two outside of her office window. Hummingbirds symbolize eternity, continuity, and infinity, and the hummingbird animal totem is a messenger of hope and jubilation.

I feel blessed by my husband and children and look forward to spending some quiet togetherness with my mom and sister on our annual Mother's Day weekend meal out. Blessings in the midst of worry.


  1. I hear you, Marie. You are not alone. My heart has been heavy lately with the pain of others. It's tough, to be a human being! Especially when you become a mother - I wasn't prepared for how much more I FEEL things, especially anything sad having to do with kids. Anyway, I like your hummingbird inspiration - it's a blessing to be able to find glimpses of nature's beauty in the midst of human suffering. I recommend books by Sylvia Boorstein - she's a wonderful, warm,grandmotherly type who also happens to be a Buddhist, and she's very accessible in her writing - I always feel better about life when I read her.

  2. Thank you--I'm glad to know I'm not the only one. I will look into Sylvia Boorstein's books. Thanks for the tip!

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