Category Archives: compassion

My Issue With Breast Is Best

6th pic presentationThis is an article my daughter wrote about breast cancer which touched my heart. It is worth reading and better than anything I could ever write. It was written from the heart. It is important to remember that the hurts we bear and suffer are not always obvious. We will perhaps never know or understand fully what another person endures because we don’t walk in their shoes and never will.

“”Dignity is The moment you realize God had greater plans for you that don’t involve crying at night or sad Pinterest quotes. It is the moment you stop comparing yourself to others because it undermines your worth, education and your parent’s wisdom. Dignity is the moment you live your dreams, not because of what it will prove or get you, but because that is all you want to do. People’s opinions don’t matter.”  Shannon L. Alder

I read another post about the poison of GMO, corn syrup, baby formula.  One more post in an extensive news-feed.  It is opinion, and I can scroll past, but it feels like another not so subtle reminder of the “breast is best” undercurrent that permeates everything baby related.   As a physician I feel that breast feeding is ideal.  When I was a third year resident and I had my first baby I was adamant about exclusively breast feeding.  I cried when my milk didn’t come in right away after a long induction.   I also relished the fact that my newborn grew into a chubby, giggly infant and it was due to my own body.  I pumped and breastfed, it was a blur of insomnia knowing that I would have to go back to work.  I took time off and managed to keep a freezer full of breast milk in case my supply dropped off when I did go back.  As a resident with overnight calls I knew I couldn’t be sure how often I could pump, pagers go off, codes happen, patients, admissions, rapid responses, they don’t wait for pumping.  I was determined, I continued to pump, overnight, sometimes in bathrooms, call rooms, it depended on how far of a walk, and which were occupied.   I was determined to make the one year mark. Continue reading

Right And Wrong

e2qG9e2aVF_1400538757449“if we tell them the brain is an app maybe they will use it.” Anonymous

“So far, about morals, I know only that what is moral is what you feel good after and what is immoral is what you feel bad after “Wrong does not cease to be wrong because the majority share in it.”
Leo Tolstoy

“Right is right even if no one is doing it; wrong is wrong even if everyone is doing it.” Augustine of Hippo

Focusing more on what is honest mindful  and right about our lives and behavior sends what is dishonest immoral and wrong in our lives fleeing in despair. I know  we should focus on the good but are we pretending there is no bad in our midst? Is the fear of offending anyone keeping us from truth and reality? I can’t help but wonder that in all of our thoughts regarding freedom and democracy we  have lost the spirit of honesty, mindfulness, and conscience. We  all want to belong so much we have given up our right to see any problems in our speech behavior or attitude towards others. There is no amount of rules truths or guidelines that we do not bend in order to fit in or ease our conscience in some way. Whatever we do we can find a reason or excuse for our actions and free ourselves from blame and guilt.

How is it  we don’t see what is in front of our eyes. The brain washing needs to end and we need to stand up for what is of value to our souls and spirit. We are melting into one huge blob of unthinking creatures and should break  away from the brainwashing and wake up to the reality of truth. Are we content to let the family structure dissolve? Is it beneficial to promote the hero as someone who can defeat and crush everyone else? Is control power and strength what we really want or need?

The path we are on focuses on speaking up to others in a belligerent way. It is praiseworthy to knock others down or get revenge. We have leaned how to be the bully in every area of our lives and laugh at the losers who are “Left in our dust”. Have we really won? Have we asked what we have won? I see this as mindless thought and actions. It hurts people riles them up to get revenge and hurt back. The end I guess is when the last few of us are left standing. What a dreary world to look forward to.

I was thinking recently and it led to my thoughts of right and wrong and positive and negative actions. We have the freedom to think and act and speak the way we want regardless of the pain of the words. We can dress and be rude to others at will. We can step on others in order to get what we want while disregarding the cries of others. We are losing our humanness in place of power. Money fame and control lend power. The ones wielding the power can manipulate us bend us coerce us or sell us a fairy tale in order to gain and use our trust.

We see and hear bad language, immoral movies, crude dressing on young innocent kids that the surprise or shock factor is gone. We wonder at the crimes committed  yet we don’t look to ourselves and the world we are creating. It is time to  wake up smell the coffee and consider our spiritual self and where it is at. If one wants to fill their minds and brains with gruesome thoughts of all kinds then see it filter throughout society. What we are thinking of is what will be created. It is only a matter of time before killing will be accepted if the person doing it had a “GOOD REASON” to do it, such as revenge. Where is our moral  compass?

We have stopped attempting to lift people  up but instead have chosen to crush them into the ground. We are all vulnerable. I’m not sending out gloom and doom but truth and reality. Just watch television or read the paper or listen to the number of people or children killed all over the country. Does this bother us because I think it should. It is progressively worse and I feel like we are on a one way train towards a cliff. Enough of us have to get off and stop the train before we all crash.

everyone dies there is no escape and we all accept this. We don’t take anything with us except our spirit and or soul. Have we considered in what shape it is in? Have we filled our minds with honesty mindfulness and empathy for self and others? Have we stopped to think of others or excused ourselves of blame? At our death will we be absolved of our wrongdoing? Have we thought of any of it as wrong, immoral or offensive? I feel that it is a crucial time to start recalling what is good and pure in our lives. It is time to defend honesty and stop compromising our values in order to fit in with untruths and unworthy living. There is something to be scared of. It is called the lies and perversions present in our society. Covering it up like it doesn’t exist is likely the worse thing to do.  Just like the catholic church covered up child abuse with the false belief it was for the benefit of the church, people and humanity. I ask who’s betterment. Truth is never a mistake. It cleanses things.

If you think something is wrong perhaps  you are right. If you  feel uncomfortable about something then maybe you should not do it. If you are  tempted when in the presence of some people or places or things perhaps you should avoid it. Wake up and stop pretending you were lulled into something wrong becaiuse it is at that moment you are being lulled into believing you had no  choice. You always have a choice and it’s better to admit wrong and ask for forgiveness than to lie even to self and add to wrongdoings.

“The superior man understands what is right; the inferior man understands what will sell.” Confucius

“Tell me what you pay attention to and I will tell you who you are.”    Jose Ortega y Gasset

“It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society.” Jiddu Krishnamurti

“The first principle of value that we need to rediscover is this: that all reality hinges on moral foundations. In other words, that this is a moral universe, and that there are moral laws of the universe just as abiding as the physical laws.”     Martin Luther King Jr.

 

Intentions

Animals10“Good intentions  are not enough; commitment and sacrifice are necessary.” Laurence G. Boldt

“Just because I am strong enough to handle pain doesn’t mean I deserve it.” Pix

“When our actions are based on good intentions, our soul has no regrets.” Anthony Douglas

“No man ever steps in the same river twice cause it’s not the same river and he is not the same man.” Heractitus

“Integrity is doing the right thing even when no one is looking.” C. S. Lewis

Our intentions regarding any matter are mixed and hidden because we are trying to fathom ourselves and others. It may not make sense but if you ask someone why they performed a certain act of kindness or meanness they usually give a group of responses for the one question. It made sound like, “I wanted to help them and they supported me and I felt like  I owed them.” The list continues in a confusing way and you wonder why you asked the question in the first place.

Does this mean we don’t know ourselves? We perform kind acts due to payback? We support others because we feel others are  watching us? Lastly I wanted to Help. I surmise that the majority of us would rather not think about it and just take the credit. It makes us feel better if we can say this person helped me in the past and I owe them or I helped them in the past so they owe me. I wonder if we hate  to feel we owe someone in any way. I am always on watch myself to come to the aid of a person who helped me at another point in time.

It is funny how it  weighs on our conscience to settle the bill. We worry about settling a bill yet we don’t worry about settling an unkind word or action. It seems unsettling to think this person somehow is above us because they performed a kind service to us. We want to come to their aid  even if they don’t want it nor request it. I had a friend who needed to repay any  service I did for her immediately. It didn’t matter if I did not want the repay at that moment or ever. In her mind if she did something for me the debt was paid and her conscience was clear. Another friend I had done something for repaid me far into the future at a time when I truly needed help. I appreciated the second repay far more because she obviously noticed my need and jumped in versus the first repayment of helping when there was no demand.

I thought to myself maybe that was the crux of the issue. It is easier  to avoid facing the necessities  of others with a myriad of  excuses than to observe someone’s hardship and requirement of help. As usual, I am as guilty of this as anyone. If I don’t stop to think over my intentions then I might overlook someone in need. I might choose to ignore someone who requires support and ignore any possible good intentions of helpfulness on my part.

There are times when we do things at work in order to get the promotion or the eye of the boss. We like to receive the great reputation so we extend to others out of our wants rather than the other person’s privation. There is also the guilt factor which leads many of us to repay a debt because it looks good or aids us in some way. So many times good intentions are must do things. Being coerced into doing things happens every day. There are those people who volunteer to do something and force others to jump on the wagon. Of course these actions are many times worthwhile but again the good intentions may not be present.

I sometimes wonder if by going along with good actions we are picking up good vibes and learning to care. I certainly do hope so. It would be nice to see a world of compassion where all of us thought about the next person and their welfare. If every intention was compassionate and full of empathy we would have a better world to live in.

There are times others let us down because they  are thoughtless to our needs and feelings. Recalling those times we did the same to  others helps us to overcome the self pity. I am not saying to stop loving the self as most of us find little time to think about self yet we should. I am saying how easy it is to hurt others without intending to do so. The wrong look, remark, laugh or action can send us reeling for cover. The intention wasn’t there to cause pain but the hurt rang through loud and clear. I suppose we could wear some armor.

Our hope is to always have the best intentions. If we can’t do that perhaps we might attempt to think about others in a sincere way. When we come to realize we are all people with feelings maybe we will stop to think before we do or say something that is painful to another. There are those times our intentions are hurtful and we are now remorseful. There are also times when our intentions were totally honest and without any harm meant.

We don’t have to analyze every word or action done. We just have to try to do our best and observe any need we see that can be fulfilled. The kindness may never make the newspaper but it is always felt within the heart. There is nothing more revitalizing than experiencing that feeling, especially when it is performing an action that likely will never be repaid. That is when it is unconditional and not ever meant to be repaid. That is an unconditional act of love that will endlessly travel around the world.

“Think the best of each other especially of those you say you love. Assume the good and doubt the bad.” Jeffrey R. Holland

“Your wings already exist. All you have to do is fly.” Anonymous

“I will not die an lived life. I will not live in fear of falling or catching fire. I choose to inhabit my days, to allow my living to open me. To make me less afraid and more accessible. To loosen my heart until it becomes a wing a torch a promise. I choose to risk my significance; to live so that which comes to me as seed goes to the next as blossom and that which comes to me as blossom goes on as fruit.” Dawn Markova

Mercy Is The Other Side Of Love

Animals19“I don’t want to be at the mercy of my emotions. I want to use them, to enjoy them, and to dominate them.”
Oscar Wilde

“there is a God, there always has been. I see him here, in the eyes of the people in this [hospital] corridor of desperation. This is the real house of God, this is where those who have lost God will find Him… there is a God, there has to be, and now I will pray, I will pray that He will forgive that I have neglected Him all of these years, forgive that I have betrayed, lied, and sinned with impunity only to turn to Him now in my hour of need. I pray that He is as merciful, benevolent, and gracious as His book says He is.” Khaled Hosseini

I was looking up the word mercy the other day and discovered  so many words attached to it that it surprised me due to their different meanings like the words kindness, understanding and generosity. We might ask ourselves what does generosity have to do with mercy. Of course if you forgive someone who may not deserve forgiveness in most peoples’  eyes, so  perhaps you have bestowed mercy in a generous way. I had to think about it for a long time.

There are those people  who seem to constantly require  our forgiveness and we are not always in the mood  to be so generous or sympathetic which  are words for mercy. Extending mercy is right up there with forgiveness. It isn’t easy and can be impossible on certain days or situations. On the other side mercy and forgiveness can be extended on the most impossible day or situation if we see beyond our own pain and witness the hurting situation of another person.

Likely we are not always aware when we cause pain to others. We haven’t  walked in the shoes of a lot of people. To us in can appear that they are lazy, stupid, unkind and mean. Understanding their inner turmoil of unrest takes a lot of our time yet it is worth it. Even if we can’t fix their issues we can understand which is also a definition of mercy. Sometimes people don’t have the words for their pain like a toddler who can’t explain a situation beyond their comprehension. At times we only have our emotions which fire out of control. That will render us little  sympathy. (Another word for mercy)

Dan Skognes stated that, “Your greatest pain can give birth to your purpose.” If you think about that  you understand  how simple and complex that is. Many times we comprehend what another feels only by experiencing it ourselves. The impact ignites our desire  to shout this  knowledge to the world especially when we are surrounded by those who don’t get the core of the pain.

I believe that many times hurting people just want to be understood and acknowledged. They want us to see and understand or show mercy. The depth of one’s pain cannot be explained because we all experience situations in our  own way. However the reality is honest and the hurt others endure can be lifted somewhat and released. The hurt will be remembered at times but sharing it with others might dilute the pain.

On any given day we can extend mercy. It doesn’t cost us anything but a few words or simple act. The gift of compassion  or mercy is beyond measure and can set a person on a new path of love and life. I equate it to picking someone up from the floor. When they find love and relief they let go of  anger and fill themselves with love. That is when they can offer it to others and teach them how to let go of the negative by forgiving or showing mercy. That is also the point at which they might become the teacher rather than the rejected crushed unthinking or unfeeling  person. Their pain becomes a beacon to those who give pain without thought and those who are trying to resolve their pain.

My own childhood pain led me into teaching and working with children in need. I went back to college as an adult and got my undergraduate and graduate degree and certification in regular classroom instruction and special education. I blocked out most of my traumatic childhood but had an affinity for abused kids which I didn’t understand where it came from. Writing the book Tumbleweed Kid which will be published in the somewhat near future, came from the experiences of my classroom years of instruction as well as my own childhood.

I must admit my first copy of the book which is unavailable was anger and frustration at the parents. As I understood my own pain which was interfering with my sympathy or mercy I began to rewrite the book. I have forgiven  but the pain of childhood caused me to be intuitively aware of the feelings of kids and basically all people I am with. The sensitivity is sometimes overwhelming because I can’t let it go so easily. I worry about what I say and do so as not to offend anyone but of course it happens anyway. Now I tell myself if I have done so and know my intentions were never meant to hurt then I let go of any guilt.  It isn’t easy but it helps.

I’m all about relationships which get so muddled from insignificant issues. We just have to try to understand more with our hearts and stop analyzing so much in our heads. Even if you had a difficult childhood of any degree you can alter your own way of parenting. You can accept your pain and hurt but go down a different path. Have mercy on yourself and do better. Think about the kids and their kids etc. How many lives you will improve with your transformation. Understand where your anger is coming from or where your parents’ anger came from and resolve the issues. It isn’t easy but a conscious effort makes all the difference.

I never understood why I would freak out if my husband wanted to even slap the kids. I don’t  believe in spanking. I suffered when the kids at school told me home stories of suffering and pain. In the end I faced my own childhood issues and the problems in today’s home environments and hope to spread the idea of a better way of disciplining kids which begins with love first. Disciplining with love works the best. Parents are not bad just unaware of the damage they do when spreading anger fear and bullying. If society wonders where it comes from just check out the home environments of some children. We hate to look because it isn’t pretty and we don’t have the answers. Now the courage is necessary if we want to change the world for the better. Stop blaming others and look inside yourself for the answers. Don’t hate yourself instead put the energy into changing yourself to a more merciful person. Don’t forget what the definition of mercy means!

“I have always found that mercy bears richer fruits than strict justice.”  Abraham Lincoln

“I love the Lord, for he heard my voice; he heard my cry for mercy. Because he turned his ear to me, I will call on him as long as I live. (Psalms 116:1-2 NIV)”  Anonymous

“The world will give you that once in awhile, a brief timeout; the boxing bell rings and you go to your corner, where somebody dabs mercy on your beat-up life.”     Sue Monk Kidd

I am here for a purpose and that purpose is to grow into a mountain, not to shrink to a grain of sand. Henceforth will I apply ALL my efforts to become the highest mountain of all and I will strain my potential until it cries for mercy. Og Mandino

“The Lord’s mercy often rides to the door of our heart upon the black horse of affliction.”     Charles Haddon Spurgeon

“Night is a time of rigor, but also of mercy. There are truths which one can see only when it’s dark”    Isaac Bashevis Singer