Posted in Europe, Travel

Market Square Rothenburg

A few years back, I squeezed on top of the white tower in the background. Climbing a narrowing staircase that pretty much allowed for one way traffic only, I felt more and more claustrophobic. At the very top is a tiny square opening to crawl out on top of the round enclosure encasing the tower. I honestly wished I could have gone backwards. Onwards I went, hoping not to get stuck in the small opening. Standing on the top with just a waist high railing is not for the faint of heart and although the view was breathtaking, for me this will rest as “I did it, but don’t have to do it again”. Ever, lol…

Posted in Europe, Inspiration, Travel

Marcus Turm

Marcus Turm is the name of one of the towers in Rothenburg, my favorite city close to my home. It is touristy, but you can’t beat the medieval flair and feel of this place. It never gets old, and neither does it for the Storks who frequently build their nest on top of the towers overseeing the travelers from near and far.

Posted in Inspiration, plants

Another Chance

Weeks ago I almost threw Mom’s plant out. It was a dried up mess of brittle, bare branches, and looked awful. The only thing that saved it was that I had no room in the trash can. I was going to toss it the next time, and I’m the meanwhile kept it standing on the window sill. I watered the other plants and poured some excess water into the shriveled up planter. Low and behold it started sprouting new leaves before I ever had a chance to throw it out. And look at it now and the beautiful red bloom it thanked me with. Mom was delighted to see this picture, and it is the little things these days that make her smile. I know the lesson that I took away from this. Do you have one too?

Posted in Animals, Humor

A new friend

A new friend has moved in, and quite honestly I’ve been looking for this friend since I got to Germany. I had a few close calls of seeing one, but in the end I missed the opportunity and never actually saw one. This is so special because I have never seen this friend anywhere else other than in Germany.

I remember back to my childhood as I was still living here. It was a warm summer day as I was walking home from school. I noticed something near the sidewalk and walked towards it to take a closer look. Almost completely curled up I found an injured animal. It appeared that it was hit by a car, and his nose was bloody. I wasn’t sure if he was alright, if he was in shock, or if he was dying. I had no clue how long he had been there, and it was hard to tell with the blood how extensive his injuries were. I picked him up and carried him all the way home, with my bare hands and without injury or pain. He knew I didn’t want him any harm and he relaxed. From there, mom came quickly to my aid and made a batch of chamomile tea. The chamomile tea would serve as a healing potion and a way to cleanse the bloody wound. After further inspection, we detected a gashing wound to his nose, and decided to keep him for awhile. He needed a break and someone to nurse him back to health, as he would be unable to feed himself for awhile. Daily I would feed him milk with the help of a doll baby bottle until he progressed to eat the worms mom would gather in the yard for him. This was not her favorite thing to do, and she got grossed out hacking the worms into bite size for him. It makes me smile these days to think of it. Not for the poor worms but for mom doing what was necessary for another to survive. We would keep him in the garage and each morning engaged in a game of hide and seek before school. He was hiding overnight and it was my turn to seek and find the little rascal. He used to find the most unusual of places to hide, such as grandpas shoes, and we had a couple of close calls.

If you are still wondering about what, or who I’m talking about, then please let me introduce you to my pet hedgehog which I later named Fritz. Nursed back to health, Fritz one day came to school with me for a presentation of show and tell. He got to sit on the Pult (the teachers desk) while I read my essay about hedgehogs. One by one, each kid came up to the desk to take a closer look, to touch Fritz and explain how cool he was. I was truly the hero for the day with my unusual pet friend Fritz.

Fast forward to my current time her in Germany, the backyard at mom’s house was like a jungle. It had always great meaning to her, but the signs of years passed, unable to tend to it were very obvious. The middle walkway was completely covered and it looked like tall savannah grass along with other various weeds. It was funny to watch Bember came through the grass, like a lioness through the savannah, all you could see was the grass moving until she finally emerged at some point. A wild tree (Mom doesn’t remember ever planting one) was going haywire and needed trimming badly. All weeds and branches were collected in a pile to the garden entrance to be hauled away at a later time. Until it happened and the noise of breaking twigs and rustling leaves came from the pile. Snorting sounds and further excavating noises followed. I knew what it was, and my wish finally came true, the waiting of a new friend moving in was finally over. I placed a bowl of cat food and cut up apples near the pile entrance and I have yet to get a good look and a picture for you. What I did get is special hedgehog food made out of meat, insects and eggs. Yummy.

Looks like Bember has a new friend and I hope her and Betsy will get along. 🦔 Yes, I already named her.

Posted in Inspiration

Love

It is nonsense says the reason,

Nothing but pain says the fear,

It is risky exclaims the caution,

Even impossible, says the experience.

But it is what it is says nothing else but LOVE…. ♥️

Posted in Life, Mom

This and that

Just a few more days and the company I used to work for in the states will forever close their doors. I really haven’t worked since the end of February, but at least I was still employed. It feels a little different now as everything is coming to an end and to fully understand that I will not work with the people that once were my team again. Yet, a few friendships have formed that are very special and will last well beyond. I might’ve not worked for a few months, but in reality I have busted my tail. I have engulfed myself into a different mission and the payoff has been of other value than the monetary kind. One that has been rewarding, most important and sometimes even missing. Mom has been my mission, my employer, the one consuming all of my efforts and actions.

The past week, since Moms return to the nursing home has mostly been peaceful. I know that she is genuinely happy when I come to visit her, and she has smiled that child like smile more times than ever. She is considerate, rational and accommodating. Her face is soft as well as her voice and she reacts to touch, is food motivated for the treats that i bring her and seems to enjoy my company. We read the little Buddha for the first time in what had been a few weeks. The last time we read was just before she was admitted into the hospital, and Mom loves the little book. I’m not always sure that she understands the lessons that come with each chapter, and sometimes she even gets a bit sidetracked by wanting to read a headline in her own magazine. When I stop to read because she is not giving me her undivided attention, she quickly puts the magazine down and pleats that she is paying attention. I haven’t tested her yet by making her repeat what I just read, and I’m grateful that “I” can do something as simple as read to her, that makes her happy. Again the importance lies within that it is me who brings that joy to her, and honestly I often feel that she might have not survived the last episode without me. I know that I gave her purpose and something to look forward to. I made her hold on and not give up hope. I made her believe that she could do it and she did.

During a rough patch a few weeks ago, she told me that my childhood bed was going to stay where it was, in my childhood room, the room I’m sleeping in. It was too late and I had purchased a mattress and a new bed that was waiting to be assembled and to which she had prior agreed to. I couldn’t turn back anymore and I think she knew it. During the argument I told her that I had planned on putting the old bed in the attic and cover it for protection. “Don’t you dare”she said and although I did assemble the new bed, I didn’t put the old one in the attic. I felt guilty to some point, going against her wishes, feeling even weird removing the screws that Dad once drove into the wood as he assembled my childhood bed. I took the pieces downstairs into what used to be my grandparents apartment and leaned them against the wall. It’s been weeks since this happened now. Two days ago, out of the blue, Mom asked me if I assembled the white bed (my childhood bed) again up in the attic. Somewhere and somehow she had stored that information and recalled it in the most surprising and unusual of ways. I was stumped for a moment as I looked at her waiting on the answer, and finally said “No”. It was her turn to be surprised and she responded by saying “I thought that’s what you said you would do.” I just smiled at her and said “Well I didn’t” while changing the subject almost within that same sentence. I wasn’t sure if telling her the whole truth would be beneficial and I didn’t want to risk getting her upset. It all worked out and I think deep down she knows that I did put up the new bed. It doesn’t matter, but what does is to keep her at peace. That has been my mission and I have become a collector of smiles and one moment at a time.

Posted in Celebration, Recognition

Celebrating “YOU” ~ Amanda from Fourbrancheshealing

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This week’s contribution is my second since I started Celebrating “YOU”, and just like the first time I actually feel a little nervous. Nervous that my words will fall short to convey and bring justice to this wonderful and insightful blogger, the bright light on the horizon, and who has become a dear friend to me. This one means so much to me and I actually call her my soul sister. She is Amanda from Fourbrancheshealing. 

I don’t even know where to start as there is so much to be said about her. I’m not sure when it was that we crossed paths, but like so many other relationships, ours too started with a comment to a blog post. Yet it was so different and so much more than just a comment. In reality, comments are always more for me, but still something magical happened while meeting Amanda. I truly believe that people cross paths with us to provide a bridge, to help us when we need encouragement, to share their knowledge when we feel stuck, or to let us be the teachers and allow us to make a difference and contribute for them. Some stay for awhile while others leave their footprint on our hearts and stay forever. Amanda embodies all of it and I feel as if I have known her forever. There is no fear of saying the wrong thing, no fear of being misunderstood. As the scene from Avatar “She sees me”. I am always myself, as she is with me and we wouldn’t have it any other way, 

We never met and yet there is a comfort in her words that always cradle my heart. My soul lies open before her and she never fails to say the right thing. Sharing her views and knowledge, often sheds light onto alternative pathways I might have not considered. There is an understanding, a knowing so deep, that often doesn’t require words. It is as if feeling a virtual hug, an embrace of never being alone, a guardian angel that is always watching over me. I feel her with me, even when we don’t talk.

She is my soul sister and seldom have I felt these words with more power and certainty. I have a few other sister,  not through birthrights, each different, special and unique and they all have great significance. Amanda had a huge mission and has helped me become whole and see the unseen. She already has left her footprint on my heart and there is no doubt that the beautiful friendship we have built in such a short time, will last forever. I feel truly blessed and lucky beyond words. 

Amanda is a confident woman, aware of her capabilities and powers, but she is also the person that will go to great length to help and heal you, as well as the world. She has a mission, a journey to fulfill as she grows herself and challenges herself to be of even more help. Amanda is a servant leader, a person that wants to help, a person that believes in the power of one, and a person that needs to do her part to make a difference. No matter how big or small, she sees the greater picture. Her wisdom is out of this world and she is indeed a very old soul that is here to share and shed her light. It’s bright and you can’t miss it if you look for her. Amanda loves our Mother Earth and is a medium to the spirits that are always around us. 

Learning more about Amanda and being at a point in my life where I needed answers and healing, I asked her if she could perform a shamanic journey for me. She did, free of charge, can you believe it? Not that it would have mattered, because what she has done for me is truly priceless, but still, wow. She actually offers free healing on her blog, and I hope you pay her a visit, even if this might not be you. The journey is always personal and what I can tell you is that there was a great deal of healing for me. There were emotions so strong and deep I had carried for so long, that were trapped and had gone unresolved. There was a vital part of me missing that was now complete, all because of Amanda’s help. The detail in which Amanda shared her results and findings with me was incredible. The time it must have taken was not an issue to her and there was never the slightest feeling of things being rushed or a sense of “What’s in it for me”. She was here to help, selflessly and fully committed. The follow up was nothing short of amazing. She never gave me too much, I always felt that my personal well being was the priority and her patience was simply admirable. I was a newbie with little to no clues, but I was already a believer, and was ready for the message Amanda would bring my way. 

Amanda strikes me as a person that would offer you the shirt off of her back without ever asking back for it. She has a huge heart that has seen much pain in the course of her lifetime, but she has risen above and has never given up. Life was not easy for her, she has fallen many times, feeling alone and unloved, taken advantage of and talked about behind her back. These people must have been out of their minds, not recognizing this beautiful soul and all of her blessings. Well, I’m beyond thrilled to be here to shout it from the rooftops about the amazing woman she has grown into. To stay strong in the face of adversity and to get back up after each knock to her knees. You inspire me in ways you most likely don’t know, but then you probably do because you know my heart. Today I am Celebrating “YOU” in an additional and official way, but in reality you lead my celebration list each and every day. Thank you for the gift of “YOU” and for everything that you bring so kindly to all of us. What you have done for me is nothing short of miraculous and I hope you know that you mean the world to me my beautiful soul sister. Xoxoxo

Posted in Life, Mom

Trusting the unseen

I have seen Mom less during the past three weeks, trying to find more balance for myself and gather new strengths. It’s a constant challenge and when I’m there to see Mom, I get so tired and exhausted at times that I wish I was back home able to catch a break. And when I’m home, I feel sad for her being so alone, knowing that I’m pretty much all she has to bring a little balance and light into her own day. I managed to ride the bicycle there twice now and it’s not so bad when it is cooler outside. It brings me the exercise I was looking for as a counter to sitting so much, but I’m not sure I can manage when it get’s hotter, and heat is in the way.

Without a doubt has this been one of the toughest times of my life. I’m strong and I fight for Mom until moments of vulnerability creep back in and leave me raw. Yesterday was such a moment, although everything went well and I really had no reason for it. Nothing crazy happened, and yet I felt like I wanted it all to end. Tired of the same motions, going around in circles, facing fears and letting the roof fall onto me, I just wished things were different. I can’t even tell you how different and in which way. There is nothing simple and easy about life and more and more I’m learning to understand this phrase. Don’t get me wrong, I’m ok but the ego found a way to sneak back in and play a tune of terror. I felt guilty for only seeing Mom for three hours every other day, guilty for her existence, her fate, which I know is not up to me to carry. It is a big part of my life and always has been. I don’t think I will ever not feel responsible for Mom, wishing her life could have been different. I will never see her childhood pictures without feeling bad for the innocent child that had no clue of how much crap was ahead of her.

I think was scares me the most is the unseen and not knowing how this all is going to continue. Eventually, I will have to leave, I dread that day. Eventually, I can’t ride the bike there anymore. Eventually the dependable, frightened thing (me) will wear out her welcome. It’s scary and what I meant in the past with feeling lonely. Life goes on for everyone as I become extra responsibility and I know it. Everybody will wonder and perhaps already is how this is going to continue. Why I struggle to accept the things the way they are, unable to just move past it and say that I did what I could. To give myself permission and wash my hands clear of my conscience. My devotion to Mom might have strained some relationships because I have too much heart invested and can’t grasp the rational sense of everything. It’s not that I don’t understand that side, but I feel that compassion is a much better servant for someone that is losing the life they have come to known. More than ever I will have to trust my two swords of faith and love to carry me through the heartache. To trust and believe that I am doing everything within my power. I just don’t think that I’m done doing all just yet, and again it is the unknown, the unseen that scares me, wondering how and when the time will be that I know. How will it look like, will Mom be ok, and how will it affect me so far away? I think I have been stuck in this funk for a few days now, almost feeling guilty that I’m allowing myself some time to live. As if I’m not deserving because I have a specific mission, one that is time sensitive and dependent on so many things. I have felt unmotivated to write and this seems to be the longest, most insightful post in awhile. It can truly be overwhelming to go through the motions to say the least.

On the way home from Mom yesterday, I found the biggest black feather yet. I quickly laid the bike down to stop and pick it up. I added it to my bag of 1000 wishes (another post) that I already had collected and stored it in my small bag pack. I feel that the universe provides us with messages just at the right time and when we need them. Perhaps this was a message that a loved one and my angel is watching over me. That protection was given to shield me from any negativity and that clarity was on the way. I’m holding strong, while allowing the negativity that comes in many forms to pass through me. I continue to make love and faith my priority and trust that the unseen will find it’s way.

My collection of feathers found so far.