Fear or Faith

Most situations that cause anxiety and panic are opportunities to choose between “fear” or “Faith”.

Panic almost always blinds me to the things I already know and make me forget that I believe everything happens for a reason; that reason is so I can grow towards who I am in my Soul; that death is only an instant transition from a physical life to a metaphysical, one that never ends, so nothing’s to fear; that God is loving, joyful,  and  supports us in wellness and sickness, no matter what comes our way.

Remembering these things bring me those flashes of peace that are keeping me from full-blown hysteria.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY SHEA…

I thought of you every minute and second of today, like every day.  I remember the wonderful time we had on the last birthday we spent together.  You were bright, cheery, zand happy.  You were filled with the joy of life and doing so well.  The next month you were gone.  

I relive that morning as if it were yesterday.  So surreal, so crazy, not believing it could be true.  I never expected you would ever leave me.mmwe were best friends as well as mother and daughter.  I know it was not my decision and God never bargains for a life as much as I tried.  I still wonder what I could have done to protect you.  I know that is selfish because you left for a more beautiful place with eternal happiness and peace.   But I am your momma and still want you here with me.  It does not seem natural you would leave before me and I will never understand.

I think of the day you came into my life. Giving you life was my greatest achievement.  You were so beautiful and tiny, with your eyes wide open as if to take on this world running.  Did you know you were so perfect?  The other babies in the nursery were wrapped up tight and sleeping peacefully, but not you!  Your eyes were wide open at 5 minutes old and kicking that swaddling blanket off and screaming for me to take you home.  From that moment forward you were my little rascal!  The joy and laughter you brought me was delightful.  So funny and happy!  It was hard to scold you even when I would find you on the kitchen floor eating sticks of butter out of the refrigerator!  

These moments of happiness I cherish as if it were yesterday.  Can you hear me sobbing when I talk to your photo every morning?  I can still hear your voice saying, “momma don’t be sad, I am still with you.  Can’t you feel me all around you”?  I know if you tell me so, it must be true. I want to touch you, hug and dance, like we used to do.  I want to run my fingers through your long beautiful hair and hear you say, “momma leave my hair alone” and giggle.  That giggle made so many laugh and I felt proud you could make so many laugh because you were you. You were just that way.  

I’m not the only one that misses you.  Someone speaks of you every day.  I guess it keeps me going to know you were so loved.  Aunt Mary and Uncle Mark called me today.  They wish you a happy birthday.  It is hard to keep up with birthdays but there are some we can forget.  

My darling girl you were special in every way.  You are now my Angel watching over me and I know that is true.  I see you in everything beautiful and you remain in my heart exactly the way you were.  You were so loving and found the good in everyone you knew.  People don’t forget that because it was You.  Maybe I’ll rest in peace knowing you are under the arms of our Lord.  I want to believe that we’ll we will be together once again even though sometimes I stray from that belief. I have to remind myself of the good Lord’s promise as I couldn’t go on knowing I’d never see you again.

So, my precious girl have a happy birthday in the Heavens and know you are loved and remembered in this world every day.

All of my love forever,

Your Mama

Turning 40…

My darling Shea,

I missed your birthday by a few minutes, but my day was filled with nothing but thoughts of you. A I did not know what to write as I have been so sad today because you are not here. But I wish we could have shared your 40th birthday together.

Every minute of your birth 40 years ago is still so clear in my mind. I remember the first time I saw you and I cannot begin to share the joy I felt in looking at you, so tiny, so beautiful, and mine. How could I have created someone so perfect as you?

So many thoughts have raced through my mind today. I am sorry you never experienced having your own family, a husband, a child, and all the things a mother wants for her daughter. For reasons I will never understand, these things were not meant to be for you. It breaks my heart for I know how much you wanted it all. God’s plan for you was not what I wanted, and finding that acceptance will always be hard.

I think of all the disappointments in your life and how strong you were in accepting them. You continued to smile at the most simple things in life and felt great love and joy for others who had the things you could not have. It was always so easy for you to share what you did have and always with an open heart. So many times you were hurt, but you still felt great love and compassion.

My darling girl, I think you were truly an Angel on earth, with so much love to share even when your own world was falling apart. I remember your smiles every time I looked at you. I also saw the sadness in your eyes when your heart was broken. I don’t remember you ever saying a hurtful word against even those that had done you wrong. Your compassion for others amazed me even at a very young age. You seemed to have a way of looking into another’s soul and understand that we were not all perfect. You forgave when others would hate.

I remember you telling me that you would not always be with me, but to not be sad for God would take care of me. How could you have known this? It was not something I could have ever imagined. Looking back, I see now that you somehow knew your life would be short and you did not want me to be afraid. But I was always afraid of losing you.

I think I am beginning to see the glory in God’s plan. You are now whole, still young, always beautiful, and I know you hold a precious place in Heaven, a very special Angel, doing God’s work. I miss you with all of my heart, and cherish the years I was so blessed to have you in my life. We will meet again, of this I am certain. I look forward to seeing your smile again as we come together once again. I am always your mother and you will always be my child. It will be forever, as God has promised.

I see you in everything beautiful and good. I will always remember the love we shared with every breath I take. You are in my heart forever, my child.

Your mother always.

Prayer, Peace, & God

Shea,

I can’t handle the pain anymore, so yesterday I asked God to take it and handle it for me. It was hard because it felt like I was giving you up somehow. The pain is still with me but maybe over time God will help me heal and all I will be able to remember are the good times we had until I can join you. I know you understand the separation between our worlds and that I cannot continue to suffer so much. I will always feel sadness and loss but that is different than pain. I will always be your mother and that never changes but being with God is our ultimate goal and you have reached that now. I realize now it has been selfish of me to not let you go with God in peace and it must break your heart to watch me suffering. My heart is full knowing you are healthy, happy and at peace. Those are the things that only being with our Lord can provide and I feel the joy of knowing you have attained that now. We will know each other again and I do know you are surrounding me with love with every breath I take. I see you in everything peaceful and beautiful. So go with God now and know I will be okay. I hold you in a sacred place in my heart as always.

Mama

St. Patrick’s Day

Hi Shea,

I know you see all now but heck, I like to talk to you.

St. Patrick’s Day for You….My Irish Green-Eyed Beauty:

An Irish Blessing

May there always be work
for your hands to do,
May your purse always hold
a coin or two.
May the sun always shine
On your windowpane,
May a rainbow be certain
to follow each rain.
May the hand of a friend
always be near you,
May God fill your heart
with gladness to cheer you.

My darling, you are being remembered by the Missionary Oblates, in two Solemn Mass Novenas, on the Feast of St. Patrick, March 17, 2014.
One mass is held in County Mayo, Ireland.
The other is at the National Shrine of the Snows, Belleville, IL.

I wish you were with us. Uncle Mark and Aunt Mary are coming to visit today. We are going to the St. Patrick’s Day parade on Sunday. You know how much fun that is. And this year, we will have our own St. Patrick’s Day tee shirts! Catching those potatoes, cabbage heads, carrot bunches, onions, and whatever else we will be surprised with being thrown from the floats. You remember I’m sure, that I’m the designated holder of the bag for the veggies we catch since I always duck out of the way when things are thrown from the floats! But, I’d rather not be hit in the face with a potato. It hurts, I’ve trie. So, I leave the hard part to the others.


When we get home, we will fix our Irish Stew from our catch and of course, stop off first for some green beer!


Oh yes, I hear you giggling right now. How precious is that sound!

Pain and Numbers

I want to thank all the support and love, the good memories of Shea people have shared. Positive comments, and 186 likes.

What I take away from this loss-is perspective that while we all suffer some kind of struggle, and each of us has our own pain, the seeming popularity of “chronic pain,” while many suffer from physical and mental issues-you don’t have one without the other, and when I was having increased problems with RSD/CRPS around the same time that Kathy and her family lost Shea, I realized quickly that whatever it was that I was dealing with-and the number of times that when researching my own health issues, repeatedly seeing the McGill Pain Index to help providers understand the severity of the chronic pain (neurogenic pain), and how it compares to other issues so at least they know where to begin treating this, there is always someone who is worse off, but what I felt and have continued to?  Is that the grieving process belongs at the top, above any other form of chronic pain.

I also know parenting never stops. Age 9, 19, 29, or 37. You may lose you child to a variety of things: serious illness, having to hand them over to another for a better life, or to death. Faith, presence of it, it helps weather the storm. Like in Shea’s poem, one I think I read at the exact time I needed to.

And Praise God! I believe He guides all things. Perhaps not choices of others when they’ve been lead astray.

He is there to celebrate climbing the hills and carry us through valleys.

I’ve had a long road: trauma, abuse, betrayal by people I trusted. Learning to trust I believe is a leap of Faith. God is easier.

He is present in what we do. For me, I ask: what would God want, and though I see fewer do it, nothing says I’ve to be one of them. Helping one because for any reason: God would want it.

The gift from Shea’s life and yes, her passing was an honest look at my own. From Kat, I was given Truth.  From Shea, understanding that God gives me one body and that taking the best possible care of it is more important than ever.  And to remember to have some compassion for myself, and for others when people find it easy to blame someone for their own struggles.

When I was working as a medic, we’d find someone with emphysema having a cigarette, while attached to oxygen, dying of emphysema, COPD, lung cancer, or chronic bronchitis-it’s easy to be critical and sometimes the best thing instead of berating the person, I simply would take the cigarette, and immediately put the thing out, in water, and gently remind the patient that they can’t smoke in a hospital or around oxygen.  Maybe a few minutes later, state that in an hospital, it risks blowing up a city block, but with a very light note of humor.

There’s no need to increase their suffering-people are paying for any past, present, and future mistakes with either their health and/or their lives-that’s enough of a price for that one.

The price with mental health disorders is one of fear, and when people are in fear, they say things that that can be hurtful-the fear of what we do not understand can also lead in some cases, to condemnation, hurtful treatment.

strengthen you


I had the rest. It was time, healing, and a lot of searching. With friends who are family to me.

God Bless,
AJ

Remembering Jennifer Shea McGee