• The Back Story – Part 2

    The first part of this story was blogged on March 31st, 6 weeks after undergoing a procedure called Discseel. The procedure was my non-surgical choice for addressing 4 ruptured lower lumbar discs. As a very brief recap; with significant disc degeneration, the deterioration in my back stability and the increasing levels of pain (that no longer responded to care in a way that provided sustainable relief) led me to seek solutions that were non-surgical. Discseel is the procedure that made the most sense to me. From the DiscSeel.com website, this is the procedure: “The Discseel® Procedure takes approximately 40 minutes and is performed in an outpatient facility. You will be offered…

  • Moodiness

    Oh dark and moody clouds,Hanging heavy in a burdened sky,Winds darting across the sand,Pushing hair across my face. What splendor in the dark and lightof these floating wonders,How they turn my face skywardas my awe is stirred from sleep. The blanket of clouds is whipped awayOh my! What a clear blue!And over my shoulder I see rain fallon the horizon. A cyclist on his broad-tired bike, A small pack of excited dogs,Gulls soaring and playing in the updrafts,and people…faces alive with wonder.

  • Jenny Rush

    A swimming and flying cell phone…and 15 ticks

    In only 15 minutes of beating around the underbrush I managed to gather 15 ticks. There were 5 in my hair and 10 on my clothing, inside and out. I used the dog’s comb to get them out of my hair, because the teeth of the comb are closer together than any other comb in the house. Hopefully I didn’t miss any. I know all about ticks and the many diseases they carry, so why would I end up in dense underbrush, especially as the weather warms up? Well, it’s a weird story… Yesterday morning my cell phone dropped out of my pocket. It happened during the morning beach walk…

  • Skidding into retreat

    It’s a full week, this annual retreat. I think it can more accurately be described as a friend reunion. The ‘teacher’ is one of the friends. I anticipate this week deeply, look forward to the conversations, the meditations, the quiet time, the daily walks and whatever else I feel like doing or not doing. I look forward to three meals a day that I don’t have to create. And I love the exhale. But…the first day of retreat resembled chaos, for me anyway. It looked a bit like me skidding into the retreat center 10 minutes before dinner was over, stumbling up to my room with my backpack and two…

  • Mud season

    April, the worst and best month of the year. Rolling into winter in Maine is fun. It’s a time for cozy clothes and snowy days. Walking the dogs on the beach, even on the coldest days, is quiet and magical, and okay…sometimes just damn cold. But we dress for well for it. When we hit the middle of March we tend to be done with the multiple layers of clothes and heavy boots. We are thrilled at the first tiny green sprouts of daffodils that keep the promise of spring alive. Night time temperatures stop going below freezing every night, and because of my enthusiasm for wearing less layers, I…

  • Turkey Vulture

    Popped something in the oven, turned around and saw a large bird land in tree on our property. Turkey Vulture: I see you have spotted me, and I see you ran outside without shoes. I’m not so easy to photograph behind these branches…would you like me to fly to a better spot?Me: Why yes…yes I would, thank you. Turkey Vulture: Would you like me to spread my wings and make you gasp.Me: Why yes, yes I would…gasp…click, click, click. Turkey Vulture: Would you like me to turn around so you can see the front of me too, with my wings spread.Me: Why yes, yes thank you I would…(screaming in my…

  • The Bench

    Early in 2012, my friend Cindy and I sat on a bench on the banks of the Crocodile River in South Africa and I dissolved into tears. I was experiencing the indescribable joy of my life starting over. It was the beginning of life after Lyme disease, it was the beginning of life without old emotional baggage, and it was better than I could have imagined possible. A book was born of from it called, Chronic Illness as an Access to Quantum Healing. It is now 2019, and a couple of months ago our family was back in South Africa, and specifically, in the same area of the Crocodile River.…

  • A new path to silent sharing

    It’s been a few days of walking around in warm and cold air, of looking through binoculars and camera lenses. I love a scene that is broad with distance, and I love an up-close and detailed look as well. And I definitely enjoy taking photos of things that stir me. I have a new appreciation for photographers who sit in the cold snow to capture that perfect wild life shot. Those photos do not happen by chance. I have a new appreciation for how cold their hands must get as they adjust the settings on their cameras. And I appreciate those who notice the world around themselves, allow wonder to…

  • Mae, a rescued mustang

    Last year I pulled my old bike out of the basement, cleaned it off and started going out for rides. Somehow, no matter what route I peddled, I invariably ended up at the Ever After Mustang Rescue. I would hang out for a while, watching the residents as they grazed, sometimes watching them as they watched me. A month or so later I began volunteering at the barn each Saturday. I knew nothing about caring for horses and was just thrilled to have the opportunity to muck out stalls and begin learning about these beautiful animals. All the residents are rescues, all have endured trauma, all are now in an…

  • The way the light dances

    Walking along the coast line, I stood and allowed myself the awe of gazing over the vastness that is the ocean, and I breathed in the salty air. With the sun in my eyes, I marveled at the glistening water below and noticed the thoughts arising, almost as if they were begging to be arranged into a poem. If I wrote poetry it would certainly have included those first words that came to me, something about how the light dances on the water. But does the light dance? Not really. It just is. It’s steady. There is what dances in it. What reflects it. How it, whatever ‘it’ is, reflects…

  • The Back Story – Part 1

    My eyes opened slowly as I came to. It was all over. I was lying face up on the bed and I was quickly overwhelmed by the raging and searing pain in my lower back. The last thing I could remember was lying face down on the table, positioning my head so that the pillow didn’t pull the oxygen tubing away from my nose. It had been difficult to get comfortable. My back was miserably uncomfortable and it didn’t appreciate the hard, flat surface, even with the pillow under my stomach. But despite all that, the excitement that was coursing through me had me in exceptionally high spirits, loving everyone…

  • Avoiding the feeling of helplessness

    We have not tired of witnessing this phenomenon yet; the tidal pool filling up and emptying out every day. The winding river down the side of our yard is part of this wonder. At low tide it is empty except for the small stream of fresh water that flows down into the pool, and then at high tide it floods its banks as the ocean pushes inland and up the river bed. It is a morning routine to wander down to the pool for Thandi to get her morning walk. Sometimes we are there at sunrise, and the hush of the morning that is filled with bird songs is always a treat…not so…

  • A Lesson in Leaving

    There were three non-negotiable requirements for the next dog we were to adopt: Both our girls had to fall in love with the same dog It had to be a medium sized dog It had to be a short haired dog And that’s how we ended up with Ben. Nicole and Samantha both fell in love with the pup that had  large paws and long hair. Our ‘medium-sized, short-haired’ dog grew to 95 lbs of long-haired fluff and love. And he was perfect. We loved his fluffiness, his obsession with frisbee catching, and his extraordinary gentle and loving nature. We loved how he vocalized and how he was a lapdog.…

  • Doing it her way

    It’s been almost a year since my dog, Thandi, was diagnosed with a tumor on her pituitary gland. It’s been a time of focus on feeding her cooked food, supporting her through seizures, and managing a steadily increasing protocol of drugs. She has been teaching me all along. Giving me opportunities to express my love for her in more ways than I thought possible. We have slept on the floor together many nights and gone through weeks of sleepless nights. Her meds gave her a ravenous appetite (3 full meals a day) and an unquenchable thirst (5 gallons of water a day!)…and the resulting pee breaks every 2 hours, 24…

  • On suffering and forgiveness

    Today I read a quote by one of my favorite non-dualistic teachers, Rupert Spira: “Have the courage and the clarity to see that God neither cares nor even knows about suffering. Suffering is resistance, and God – eternal, infinite Awareness – like empty space, knows no resistance, and therefore cannot know suffering.” It really made me stop for a moment to contemplate suffering, and it immediately took me back to the moment in time that I saw that God does not know forgiveness. Before you jump to the conclusion that I think God/Universal Energy/The Is-ness is something of harshness and cruelty, let me share my experience around forgiveness. It occurred in a dream. I…

  • So much to say about so little

    After years of reading many books by wonderful teachers and authors (Chopra, Tolle, Dyer, Gangaji, Hawkins, Katie, Rumi…to name a few), participating in personal development programs, meditating, chanting, personal introspection, listening to talks and seminars, trying all sorts of different healing modalities, I have come to realize something….so much is said about so little. What is it we seek so desperately and with such demand that it is met by a continuous and growing body of information in such a wide variety of forms?  What comes to mind is inner-peace, love, well-being….personal fulfillment, a state of bliss. And yet it’s not what we learn that grants us inner peace, it’s…