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Summertime

William J Corbett

“Summer”,the word brings back a flood of memories that would be hard to express in words as the pictures in my mind are so expressive and colorful,to even attempt a picture would do it disservice.
A myriad of soundbites includes the laughter and teasing,having five brothers and a sister, the local public pool,bicycle rides,hide and seek,the treasured minibike rides;the racecourse limited to circling the house and even one lap turns were highly treasured.
My parents first house,I have no memory of beyond the pictures,as I was less than three years old. The second house,much larger and able to accommodate a family of nine,is where my memories start. I remember watching my brothers leave for school and wanting to go,as well,to an unknown place called kindergarten where everything must be ice cream and games. I had been wrapped in jealousy each morning as they would leave and all I could do was stare out the big windows off the front porch. I don’t remember having younger brothers at this point but they must have been there. I remember “Church for Tomorrow”,my Moms favorite,watched daily soap opera…really called Search for Tomorrow. Along those lines,we would play act answering the phone as my Dad did;”Good evening,corbessence”…which in reality was “Good Evening,Corbett Residence”,but for some reason we turned these things into our own dialect.
Once I was finally able to attend the paradise called kindergarten,I was so nervous that I wouldn’t get there fast enough and I may miss something of the fun and candy. There was a wonderful woman named “teacher” or “Miss Peltoe”…I wondered why she had two names and I probably used my own dialect again for her name but didn’t know yet how to spell or worry about such small details.
The highest order of fun was this thing called the “airport”,which was a jungle gym where we could climb to the top with the toy airplanes and attend a world of imagination and I am very sure that not one five year old in attendance knew the first thing about airports,airplanes and piloting. None of that matters to an open imagination. The only things that mattered were being on the very top of that jungle gym and having the largest toy airplane. There was this disturbance which seemed to happen regularly and become more and more time 
consuming. We would have to put away all of the toys,neatly,sit on the floor in front of this large black wall and Miss Peltoe would draw shapes called letters and numbers and it ended up that “Billy” actually looked like something on paper that I was very happy about and could not wait to show Ma. I am not sure at what point I was allowed to walk home alone,not quite two blocks,but Ma stood at the corner watching for me,probably because of two sleeping younger brothers. I remember two of my classmates ‘walking’ with me…they were on my feet like slippers and I was trying to walk with them. I remember the sounds of their laughter and my grunts,my Mom bent over laughing as I trudged toward her,trying not to bend my latest piece of treasured artwork that would hang on the fridge…until tomorrows masterpiece could take its place.
Now most of this has little to do with “summertime” but without schooltime,summertime wouldn’t really be a thing.

I wish you peace!
~b

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This Season…

Blog post 02.09.14

William J Corbett

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This season brings together so many thoughts and memories,for everyone,I am sure. I have no sadness from my childhood and so many beautiful memories for which I will be ever thankful for. Never was there a Christmas that I wasn’t satisfied with the gifts and we never thought about the food to come,and the cookies! I am sure that Mom and Dad had worries to the cost of the gifts and the food (the upcoming mortgage payment,electric,gas,phone…)yet they never showed it. I (we) have had these same issues,I am sure of this.
Think for a minute…what was your worst issue as a child at Christmas? Did you have one?
Beyond not getting the exact present,perhaps? I can’t even remember one of those. I remember our dog,Pharaoh,a bigger than life German Shepherd we had gotten when I was about five years old. He knocked over the Christmas tree and ate all of the candy canes that were once hung from the limbs like ornaments.
I remember the time it took to separate the gifts for the seven of us and the anticipation was enough to kill.
I remember getting dressed in new Christmas church-going clothes and the midnight Mass,later years. It also brings back memories of walking to church for Mass on Easter Sunday,all of us leading my parents.
Such great memories and they all lead back to being with family and walking (or riding) to church for Mass.

I had lost that somewhere along the way. Not the gathering of family…as we did these things with our children and now the grandchildren. Going to Mass as a group,a family and even if we weren’t paying particular attention to the Mass and the Homily,we were there,all together,as a family.

I regained the Mass goings after about twenty eight years,after my Dad had passed away in early December. It happened so quickly and it was then that we realized something wasn’t right about Ma. We needed to get her to the doctor but it was nearly Christmas and things were bound up pretty tightly. My brother figured that if we kept her on her normal schedule then maybe it would have just been the trauma of losing Dad that would dissipate. We scheduled a doctor appointment and then figured her schedule. Each day when they got up,they went to morning Mass and then a walk at the mall and then breakfast. Sounds easy,right?

Here is the thing,I didn’t attend Mass since I was about 19 years old. I hadn’t missed it. I was doing the other things that don’t particularly make you a saint and it was easier to keep my back to the Mass. I remember telling someone that I won’t be a hypocrite and go to a Mass and then do what I do. That excused me from nothing I found out later.
The first day I am taking Ma to Mass,I figure I’ll just let her at the door and smoke in the parking lot until she comes back out,literally having no intentions of going in. It made me too uncomfortable to even think about going in there AND giving up my current life. As I was pulling up to the church,I can see at least three exits. I wasn’t sure of more but I knew I could not see them all from any spot in the parking lot. This is a worry for someone that accompanies a parent who can’t remember to put her teeth in every day,much less walking out a door being unseen and having a 4 lane highway only steps away.

Let me explain a bit further.

My mental place wasn’t exactly the best,just losing my Dad,and being unhappy in many ways and I was mad right to my core at one person,this point being the most valid for my discomfort.
We walked into the church and she showed me to the pews she and Dad had always sat in. If you know anyone that attends Mass frequently,they have one spot where they will always sit…always!
That first Mass,the way the exits were placed,where we sat…and that Gospel reading. The Gospel that day was about the Lords Prayer. The Disciples had witnessed Jesus going up the mountain to pray,to speak to the Father and they knew He (Jesus) had always done so and that the answers needed were given Him. They asked Him to teach them how to pray and He answered them to say these things:

Our Father who art in Heaven,Hallowed be Thy name.
Thy kingdom come,
Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
Forgive us our trespasses…
AS WE FORGIVE THOSE WHO TRESPASS AGAINST US

!*BOOM*!

True story! I looked up at the ceiling of the church as though I were looking to the Heavens and,outloud,I said,

“Really?”

Ma looked up at me knowing “Really?” wasn’t part of the Lords Prayer. It’s the first time that the words were processed,that I understood them to mean anything but a prayer we had repeated without thought. Probably one of the first prayers that Christians learn fully and then they are repeated endlessly throughout life without ever digesting their truth. Now I know many good Christians that do understand these words and live them…but I did not. When I returned home,I thought hard about all of the prayers we have been taught and I went through many of them word by word and phrase by phrase,to find out what else I was missing.

My “Really” was a sadness in letting go of past hurts I had allowed myself to suffer for far too long.

That “Really” was me letting Him know I got it and that I didn’t like it.

That “Really?”was allowing that I could be forgiven all of my past indiscretions…with one key point…
“as I forgive those…”

Forgiveness is a funny thing. To really detach from past hurts of others allows us such freedom to be allowed the knowledge that we,too,can be forgiven. We may feel thoroughly swamped with guilt,and it gets heavy. Heavy on the soul,our heart of hearts,the only piece that remains after our bodies have been put in the ground to decay or even cremated…those fires that destroy our bodily person never,ever touch the soul.

Within a few days,the reading was Jesus asking us to remove the yoke that is weighing us down. To take upon ourselves,His yoke that is light.

“Take up my yoke upon you, and learn of me, because I am meek, and humble of heart: and you shall find rest to your souls”
Matthew 11:29

Soul cleansing.
You can do it,too.

These were my treasured gifts for that first Christmas back. My Ma needed me with her and my Dad set upon my heart to be inside of the church,by her side,to hear the words I needed to heal. Words that were gifted me from a couple thousand years ago…and waited for me,that day.

Ma passed away about four years later due to the complications of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Her last year and a half was spent in a memory care unit. The last three weeks she was in and out of consciousness. My brothers gathered near her bedside and we took turns telling stories and loving her,feeding her Italian ice and ice chips. Her last three days she was not gaining consciousness and she slept mostly. We couldn’t feed her the ice chips to keep her mouth from getting dry and her lips showed the peeling.
A Hospice chaplain had stopped in to talk and stayed listening to me ramble on about childhood memories,jokes,antics and anything that came to my mind. She laughed a lot and seemed to truly enjoy my memories. I remember her name being Dottie. When it became more quiet and we stared at Mom,wishing she had something to add,yet that was not to be the case,Dottie suggested we say the Lords Prayer. I had agreed and we started…
“Our Father,Who art in Heaven,
Hallowed be Thy name”

Ma opened her eyes wide and looked directly at me holding her hands in mine.
Through my tears and gasps,she held my hand
and passed peacefully…
with The Lords Prayer.

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Fathers Day

Dad Self Portrait

William J Corbett

“Fathers Day”,a titled day for the once each year,we adore the man that sat,or sits, at the head of the table for what he brought to the mix we call ‘life’. We all have so many memories of this man whom held such an important position in our lives and we are very sure that “my Dad was the best ever”. Isn’t that really the way it should be?  Having this one man we could lift to a podium,yet he would never stand there. He already knows the threat of falling from that lifted place,even if he never has fallen in our minds eye. Many have, maybe even his Dad is the one who fell and that is what scares him from the podium. Perhaps,he has fallen and just hasn’t gotten around to forgiving himself yet or his fear stands so tense that there is a much further place he could fall if, perhaps, the bricks gave way without his notice.
The gentle man in this photo is my Dad. He served during World War II,stateside and in South Africa. He was attached to the Timber-wolves. He loved photography and took several self-portraits,this one included. They say that war ages you. It always strikes me that this man was no more than 26 years old when he took this picture. He dated the photo himself,1951. Born 1925.
He had been through a personal war his whole short life,something he didn’t share too easily. His mother had died when he was very young due to cancer and his father was an alcoholic. He couldn’t possibly care for these children,Dad and his brother and sister. He had a wonderful aunt,Grace,who tried steering them to family members,although she couldn’t keep them together,she kept tabs on the three of them.
These times were tough on everyone as there was the great depression going on and our family wasn’t ever overly wealthy. He,my Dad,was passed around to different family members that didn’t,or couldn’t,take care of him. One aunt fed him peanut butter and lettuce sandwiches while making her own son steak. They had switched up their lunches once and Dad was ‘oh so happy’ to have a real meal and he didn’t care the consequence when he would be found out,and found out he would be. His cousin not only rejected the lunch he had gotten but was extremely vocal about the garbage that he had found to be his lunch. Dads uncle used to flip him a nickel when he could get away with it,for an ice cream or another treat. I don’t remember ever getting their names but Dad enjoyed his uncle in his life.
My Dad had gotten ready for a date,dressed as well as he could and had his camera strapped to his neck. When he was ready to leave,his aunt who was watering the garden,asked him where he was going,he replied and she turned the hose on him,soaking him and his camera. The whole situation went sour quickly and his Aunt Grace had him removed from their care.
She had found a home in Buffalo for him. He was around the age of fifteen at this time.Two German women,sisters,took in wayward boys and made them into good men. Tailors of life,for sure. They had a brother,George,who had the knack of breaking into this youngsters life,as well,and Dad took to him so well that he named his second son after him. Uncle George was a large man with great humility,an impressive work ethic and lots of guns. I will forever be grateful for Aunt Mame and Aunt Jo and their extended family that became Dads family for us to share. As Blessings will be,I not only met them but they were very active in our lives, and we in theirs.
Dad,being in Buffalo,lived nearer to his Aunt Grace and his first cousin. His cousin had a best friend named Josephine who turned my Dads heart. Unfortunately,she didn’t care for Dad as he was “too silly” for her. She was the elder sister,although she had two older brothers,the elder sister was the one who was to take care of the house and chores and meals while the mother worked. It was the depression and any extra money into the home was very necessary and my Grandmother ran the home of some very rich family in Buffalo. These things made Josephine very serious,relationships included. Dad had a few relationships with other women but kept his eye on Josephine. I won’t say he chased her but he surely wasn’t far from her and eventually won her over. I’m not sure he ever got rid of the “too silly” part for her,but he had gotten her to love him. I had never witnessed the “too silly” part of him but I sure did in my Mom.
Dad,who started out life in a challenging place and time,losing his Mom and never really having a “Dad”,moved about the country and truly abused before coming to Buffalo,spent time fighting for his life,and ours,came back to Buffalo and married the one gal who would be the “love of his life”,had seven children with her and the “till death do us part” that he took very seriously,and did,leaving us all from a stroke at the age of 81,having been married for 52 years. I am very sure that he would not have been able to live had Mom passed first. She was who he lived for,worked for,breathed for. My Mom had dementia for the last three years he was alive and he never once told us of it,never asked for help and even in the most trying moments held her in his arms and danced and loved her.They had seven of us in eight years. Tell me that wasn’t challenging in itself! Imagine having six teenage boys in one house at the same time? Yep…he stayed,and thrived.
This is the man I was raised by and the pedestal I had placed him upon could not have been higher. There was a story in the Bible of a community that built stairs up high into the sky so that they would eventually get to Heaven and see God,to be on Gods level,really. I would never have called my Dad a god,but he could certainly have had conversations with God from the top of the pedestal I had placed him upon. I am very sure that God was very satisfied with my Dad and when He called him home,helped him up that one final step to embrace him like a Father would.
Thanks Dad!
Thank you God,for giving me,my brothers and sister this fine example of what a Dad is and should be. Please,Lord,guide me in these ways.

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Broken Pieces

stepping stones

William J Corbett

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Today, families,diverse in more ways than nationality,have more questions that can’t be answered simply.

Growing up in a family of seven children,parents in their first and only marriage,our aunts,uncles,cousins and grandparents all a part of a close-knit family. I had only one friend that I knew his parents were divorced and remarried. There were more but I only learned of them much later.It wasn’t mentioned nor was it a topic of any conversation. My friends had parents that fought,some loudly,yet, they stayed together. I remember several times when my Mom and Dad would have arguments,not hundreds,but several. Each time they would remove themselves to the rear of the house,two doors closed between us and them,and they would keep it as private as they could. We could hear it get heated at times but I could never make out the words and I sure wouldn’t put my ear to the door for fear they would open it and catch me while still heated. I remember asking my sister if they were going to get divorced and she assured me they were not,and sure enough they didn’t.


There was gossip of neighbors having affairs or of getting divorced. Now there is no gossip of living together,divorce or unwed pregnancy…it has become normal. Now if someone “dates” it is always the question of “when are you moving in together?”,astonished that they aren’t already, and not so much,”are you getting married?”. Now there are sex toy parties and they send invitations openly via the internet…with pictures!

I didn’t know any family where their parents were unmarried,period. I remember talk of one girl in high school who was supposedly pregnant but I never knew if it was true and I didn’t share it. I remember hearing people talk about it as she passed by and I felt embarrassed being near those people that were talking and I wondered how much it hurt her to know she was the object of their talk and I wondered if she thought I was involved.

Today,it seems that all relationships start with a “test drive” and then,maybe,a marriage. I did it,too. When people asked the name of my “wife” I felt embarrassed for her that I hadn’t enough respect,courage or faith in our relationship that it would last to have her as my wife. It’s easy to sweep that embarrassment under the rug and continue,unless she asks. Once that started I knew it was going to be a short lived relationship,even if it had lasted several years to this point but because of those lacks,marriage really wasn’t going to happen.

How did we become a nation of “test-drives”? If it weren’t for dinosaurs and the term “carbon-dating”,the word dating would have become obsolete. The 1960’s and 70’s brought about “free love”,something my parents were more than verbally against and they gave us seven,and anyone who knew them,the perfect example of “work it out,stay together”,just as my Moms parents did. My Dad was orphaned as a boy,and perhaps because of that,he wanted a one marriage life and a home where he stayed to raise his children. He worked hard,Mom stayed home until we were grown. He was a blue collar worker,didn’t make extreme money and worked his way through a Masters Degree in English Literature and she went to work so that my Dad “didn’t have to work so hard” and they retired together in their 60’s. Even with the fine example of my parents we had five divorces, several test drives that did end up in marriage,or remarriage to the original wife.

What happened?

It seems my generation slipped and fell but the following generation jumped ship completely and swam away. I think it is good that we can now talk more openly about sex and sexual situations. We can warn our children of child predators and,if they do have a question they come to us about,we can answer without being thought perverse. I never spoke with my parents about sex or sexual situations. It’s not that I couldn’t,I just could not. I learned about sex from an over anxious boy my age that had to tell me or he looked as though he would explode. I,in turn,told a brother who looked at me,horror in his eyes as he exclaimed,”That’s disgusting! They would never do that!”. He has children so apparently it was figured as not too offensive an act.

I remember my Mom turning on her radio,yes, a radio,and a program came on with the guest being Dr. Ruth. Dr. Ruth was very explicit in her answers and the questions were all about sex. She had a very thick accent which added to the nature of her show,I thought. I am very sure it is the first time that I (we) had heard the words penis and “vachina” said openly through the radios one speaker.

I was sure I had turned 50 shades of red.

My Mom would have fled the room but God would have struck her dead if she hadn’t turned off the radio on the way out. Who would have thought such words would be heard on the radio?

The largest business on the internet today is porn. Most dollars grossed,most sites listed…and you can pay with a credit card! You can openly put your name and credit information in the system so that you can watch non-stop penis and vachina action.
Disney owns porn production companies…Disney!
I just found out that two of my married friends are swapping and have been for years. My first thought was that I had been told a lie. My second thought was that I hadn’t been asked. It doesn’t matter the answer would have had to be ‘no’ but the ego doesn’t let much get past it.

I have been to so many wakes and funerals over the past year for heroin overdose,and the deceased have children,multiple children and some very young. What are the questions they will have? How will they be answered? Will the answers be full enough to be satisfied?


I think I have as many as they will…or more.

My Mom used to say fashion goes in and out but always returns so she never needed to throw away old shoes or clothes. Perhaps everything does…

My hopes.

I wish you peace!
~b
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Shine…

ladder

So…
I have realized that humanity will judge you,even when you are a distinct piece of that humanity.
I have realized that this judgement doesn’t have to change me,as long as I am okay with me.
Be okay with you,too!

You are loved 10 times more than any fool can try to put you down. The truth is that those who truly love us probably aren’t as vocal as those who don’t. This doesn’t mean we aren’t loved! It means love can be a quiet,calming on its own.

We all make mistakes. Own them and then forgive them to yourself,as waiting for someones forgiveness is also waiting for their newest judgement of you. Senseless and harmful as that could be.

Where we feel we have been wronged,is it sometimes more harsh because we realize in our minds eye that we have also wronged in this same fashion? Forgive you but also forgive them.

Peace is obtained in too many ways to list but is as simple as being good to yourself by being good to others.

We are never more brutally honest than when we are looking at our own limits and perceived faults.
Would you be as comfortable judged by another?
Would you ever be this way towards someone you love?
No?
Well,Love you! Without loving from you and for you,you have an empty account.

It is impossible to give from an empty hand,yet it is also impossible to help another up with your hands full.

I wish you peace!
~b

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PS: If you ever care to be a unicorn,be a unicorn with someone you love!

Squash Unicorns

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Save

A Day Like Any other

coming out of self focus blog

William J Corbett

The Gospel reading that stunningly brought me back in to full communion of the Roman Catholic Church 10 years back:

Gospel Mk 11:11-26

Jesus entered Jerusalem and went into the temple area.
He looked around at everything and, since it was already late,
went out to Bethany with the Twelve.

The next day as they were leaving Bethany he was hungry.
Seeing from a distance a fig tree in leaf,
he went over to see if he could find anything on it.
When he reached it he found nothing but leaves;
it was not the time for figs.
And he said to it in reply, “May no one ever eat of your fruit again!”
And his disciples heard it.

They came to Jerusalem,
and on entering the temple area
he began to drive out those selling and buying there.
He overturned the tables of the money changers
and the seats of those who were selling doves.
He did not permit anyone to carry anything through the temple area.
Then he taught them saying, “Is it not written:

My house shall be called a house of prayer for all peoples?
But you have made it a den of thieves.

The chief priests and the scribes came to hear of it
and were seeking a way to put him to death,
yet they feared him
because the whole crowd was astonished at his teaching.
When evening came, they went out of the city.

Early in the morning, as they were walking along,
they saw the fig tree withered to its roots.
Peter remembered and said to him, “Rabbi, look!
The fig tree that you cursed has withered.”
Jesus said to them in reply, “Have faith in God.
Amen, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain,
‘Be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’
and does not doubt in his heart
but believes that what he says will happen,
it shall be done for him.
Therefore I tell you, all that you ask for in prayer,
believe that you will receive it and it shall be yours.
When you stand to pray,
forgive anyone against whom you have a grievance,
so that your heavenly Father may in turn
forgive you your transgressions.”

praying hands

Nothing could have been said of human words that would have shaken 27 years of abstinence…but on the day I returned to the church to take my sweet Mother to Mass after my Dad had passed,these words shook my soul so much that I said aloud, “Really? Really! This is what You have today?”
My Mom looked at me. She had dementia but she new the words of the Mass forward and backwards and my words didn’t belong.
Four years later,holding a crucifix in her hands and praying the same Lords Prayer,she opened her eyes for the first time in days and looked straight into mine so deeply that I couldn’t possibly describe the feeling.
“…forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us” and she held my hand instead of mine holding hers,and she peacefully passed.
This is not the anniversary of her death,nor the anniversary of this reading and return to Mass. It is,however,the reading that made me forgive those whose trespasses sat so deeply in my veins, displacing any peace that could have been my due and these are the exact words with the exact perfect timing that made me know in the deepest place in my soul that there is a God, that I (and we) matter to Him and that He does call to us if we are listening,or He will place the words quietly into our lives knowing they will make the difference we needed that day.
If I had known that saying the Lords Prayer would have awaken my Ma and she would have passed,I am sure I would have chosen to not say it quite yet. He doesn’t let us know these things…but just the truth that she was pulled cleanly from the fog,looked at me directly and her eyes never wavered as this prayer was said,her hands changing to hold mine,as only a mother could for her distressed and crying child…her final gift to me…
and then to pass to His hands…

If you haven’t been to church,go.

If you haven’t thought about God,think.

If you have felt you were left alone,realize you are never alone.

Has any person in your life made a mark and removed your peace? Even if it was so very slight,yet when you think of it,it still bothers you? A “trespass” doesn’t have to be life-changing,nor does it have to be something two share. It is only something of which steals your peace if you ever think of it,whether it steals a millisecond or months to years.

It has to be given up.

It has to be left behind in such a way that it will never bother you again,even if repeatedly brought to mind.

You are worth forgiving them their trespasses!

There is a reading where Jesus says, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”
Being born again was not a festival and didn’t involve a fount,nor Holy water. It was not a celebration that involved psalms,Blessings or pomp. It wasn’t a planned affair (on my part) and no family was present except for a loving mother who believed in the love of God and His only Son, who loved the Mass so much that she needed to go every single day…and in that going every day,her son who had wandered so far would be asked to come home again.
Her son was welcomed and he accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as his Holy Savior. Her son may not readily see the beauty of the Kingdom of God upon his passing from this earth. Her son may have to be cleansed and spend some time in prayer before being worthy to be presented to the most high God…but her son will be presented.

You,too,will know exactly the moment you have been cleansed here…your re-birth…being “born again”.

Please know that you are in my prayers daily and I do ask for your prayers for me but more-so, I ask that,daily,you offer a prayer for those that have passed before us. You see there is a place of spirit called purgatory. It should most easily be thought of as having taken a shower before our wedding. We want to be clean and dressed nicely for our significant other and,although, purgatory may be a bit more painful or last longer than a good shower,maybe it isn’t and doesn’t.

These words I have prayed over to be right and true and that they may,if anything,bring you to Him,thus increasing His glory and for all to know,we live to become saints but,there are those of us who seem to drive towards the potholes figuring it will bring “this life” more excitement. “This life” is what will grade the “next life” which basically makes our years here so ridiculously small in portion…in portion to “forever”.

“…forever,and that’s a mighty long time!”

~Prince
God Bless you and keep you!
I wish you peace!
~b
Shine Today™

Not my usual post

the-broken-chain1

William J Corbett

Just a thought and a question or two…
Has the Democrat party placed electing a woman as the top goal?
Is it now more important to be known as the party which endorsed and got a female president over all other needs?
I see plenty of news articles relating that the African-Americans are, as a majority,backing Hilary Clinton.
My question is this: Where was Hilary Clinton during the peaceful demonstrations of Dr Martin Luther King,Jr.?
I also wonder why this loyalty exists?
~Has Hilary done something really well to eliminate racism which I hadn’t been privy to the information?
~Hilary was removed from the Watergate Counsel for unethical practice.
~It is also noted that her character is more than a bit flawed from how she treats those at her service…Secret Service,military service,etc.
~She removed property from the White House that was not hers to own after her husband had finished his presidency.
~She knowingly used her own computing server for her email in which would include very delicate and top secret information which is not acceptable at any level of government,much less in one of the highest offices of our government,and now possibly the highest office not only in our country but of the whole world.
~Her political experience was as a “suddenly” senator and then a “party nod” to get her some “worldly experience” to which I feel she failed miserably when she allowed the murders of our servicemen to happen without any recompense.

This is unquestionably NOT a nod for Mr Trump…don’t get me wrong!! His antics are a whole other story!
I don’t think there was a good/viable Republican candidate in the last several election cycles.
Mitt Romney is an elitist joke and his running mate Paul Ryan? The only thing I find half-interesting is that he seems to be a family man and he doesn’t like “The Donald”. He also doubled back on so many things before the election that he was tagged “Lyin’ Ryan”! He still doubles back on what he says (conveniently) as he turned away from speculation for Speaker of the House (I have absolutely no interest and will not be seeking the seat…) only to take that job around rumors that it was a good road for him to take to the White House himself! He changes and moves so much maybe his new moniker could be “U-Haul Paul”?!! A future Republican in the White House? God help us!
The Republicans made their final,fatal flaw by having two terms served with a mockery head named George while Cheney ran the country because he was not electable as President. The Bush/Cheney debacle proved big money moves mountains and they both made a boatload more money as the largest and most well connected energy companies (ie:Haliburton) moved into the war-torn countries that we were incurred the debt of repairing after we destroyed so many things with our ever-number-one technology.Not to mention the gas and oil prices being their highest while a multi-generational,well-invested Texas oil man and the CEO of Haliburton were in office.
I really think we need a new form of the government we intended on having (and out Forefathers intentions) and a new party to elect to office…and NOT the Tea Party kind of party that was really the Republican party making an attempt at a new party name.

Just a thought and question or two.
Thanks for taking the time!
~b

Elder Care

…and what it really costs us

William J Corbett

 I had met him when he was already more than seventy years old. He couldn’t say exactly how old he was and he had no relatives to ask. Nothing we could affix other than that he was definitely a senior and had senior related physical ailments.  None of these ailments mattered as he was now in my care and I would try to do my best for him.

 It seemed he had only the two pointy teeth on his lower jaw and they stuck nearly straight out making him look more like a boar than an old man, but he definitely looked like an old man. He was shuffling across the kitchen about a week after he had moved in with me and I saw something he had unknowingly kicked. I reached down to pick it up and we looked at each other mid-bend and I picked up his tooth. He didn’t seem to mind at all. One less tooth to worry about swallowing I guessed. The other didn’t last much longer but I never found it. I just saw that it was also missing.  He was sleeping with his head back and his mouth open and I realized that he did,in fact,have one remaining,defiant tooth. It looked like it could be more trouble than it was worth but a smile with one tooth is much better than a smile without any. It kind of defies the “we must be pretty” thought process. He would not be fitted with dentures so there was really no need to have it pulled.

 His eyes were glazed over with that steely blue-gray of cataracts and they became thicker as he aged. Most people didn’t even notice as he got around pretty well and his bangs nearly always covered his eyes. There is a female comedian that sang a song about “looking into your big blue eyes that cover up your big brown eyes” and it made me laugh. His sense of humor was such that it didn’t bother him and sometimes I would break out in the song and hold him and we would dance…or something that resembled dancing. He was surprisingly light on his feet but he didn’t mind my taking up all the floor space with my 13DDD’s.

 I was often amazed at how well he ate dinner and how much he ate. Anyone that had joined us for a dinnertime meal also noticed his appetite never faded. We often wondered if he missed many meals before he had come into my care. He never fussed…he just ate everything he was served and soon after eating, he would nap. He never gained a pound from when he moved in. This also amazed us as he could eat and he would eat as many carbs as I did yet as my waistline expanded he just seemed to be able to burn it all off.

 When he first moved in, I had a Pomeranian named Scruffy. Scruff was an old dog and didn’t much care for change. He wasn’t sure about our new guest and whenever he would go to where Scruff was on the couch, Scruff would growl at him. He didn’t care. He was going to win that dogs heart and he always sat very close to him, sometimes a little on him and Scruff eventually stopped caring and he would share the couch with our old friend even when he sat too closely.

One day when I had come home Scruff was sitting in his usual place on the couch,staring at me as I was closing the door with that sideways dog-glance and when I said hello he pulled himself across the couch by his two front paws. I picked him up and he pee’d down my arm. Something wasn’t going to be very good about this…
I tried to stand him up but he looked like he was doing a push up and he had no control over his back legs any longer. We rushed him to the Veterinarian but they had a sad diagnosis. He apparently had a blood clot in his spine which paralyzed him from the clot to his tail. I couldn’t believe how it had affected me and I was dry from so many tears when they had said he should go on to Heaven as his quality of life was never going to return. I submitted and held him as he passed and I didn’t want to return home without him,but I had to. When I walked in the door my friend was checking the couch for him and he looked at me for an answer but all I could do was cry more when I realized how much he was going to miss Scruffy,too. He checked the couch every day for another week or so.

The Vets office called and told me that Scruffs remains were now available. It had been about two weeks since he had passed and I had him cremated and he was returned in his own little cedar box inscribed with his name. I placed the box on the couch  and the old man sat down next to him until I put the box up on the shelf with Cheechs little cedar box that i had been keeping for about eight years now. I would keep them with instructions to my children that when I pass, they are to join me in my box.
 We didn’t care for the quietness that Scruff left us but continue on we must. We would continue to go on our visits together to my brothers family homes out of state. They always welcomed my old friend with the same exuberance and love that they had shown to me. He was always fixed a special plate at dinnertime and without his teeth and as frail as he seemed, he always ate with that same excitement of something new and fresh and delicious and he always was very thankful to our hosts for a place to sleep along with such fine dining and love. My brother Kevin always asked him if he wanted to go for an evening walk as he took his dogs out. He would stand and wait for Kevin to leash his four dogs and then they would all walk together. One time he was fussing with something and when we realized he hadn’t kept up,I called to him but his hearing was about as good as his sight and he had turned away thinking we must have headed in a different direction and he started to run toward the street. Awfully scared, we started to scream to him but as God would have it, my sister in law Donna had just come out the front door of their house and she ran and got him before there could be any harm come to him. I felt horribly as I should have been more responsible, knowing he didn’t have all of his faculties and things could have turned out much worse.
Thank you Donna!

His health slowly declined over the next several years but when you love someone and they have proven to you to have strength beyond our knowledge, to return time and again from what you would think is their “time” only to return to seemingly good health and a great appetite and adding their enjoyment and goodness of life long after everyone would have thought it had come to an end. He reminded me of my cousin Bill. Bill had pancreatic cancer and went in and out of Hospice four times. Each time he (and we) had thought for sure this was the last time, and he would prove us wrong and come back home. The fifth time he had gone in to Hospice, he was still making plans for his next return home. This would be his last time in Hospice and everyone was stunned he hadn’t won again.

My friend had lasted well into what was surely his nineties. He became a little slower and a little harder of hearing and I would have to help him up and to the dinner that waited for him. He could no longer see anything except if it was directly in front of him,touching his nose. If I walked in front of the windows with the light of the sun streaming in, he would see that movement and stand up thinking I must be going somewhere so he would either see me to the door or I would help him to the van and we were going visiting. He would get up with me in the mornings but after breakfast he was always ready for a nap and most of his naps were briefly interrupted with a need for a drink of water,but he would return to bed or to the couch where I sat and he would nap there until dinner. Every night he would get out of bed and I would watch him go to get a drink and slowly he would wander back to his bed,sometimes a little side-step but he always made it back to bed.

In this last week,his legs were really not working well but he wanted to go for a visit with me and he was perfectly happy taking the front passenger seat,as usual, for his nap on the ride. We joked about his wobbly legs without any care from him about our jokes. I made sure he didn’t try to go the stairs alone. He tried the sidewalks at my brothers house but cruised off onto the grass,thankfully he didn’t fall or hurt himself. His appetite was still wonderful and he never left as much as a crumb.

I usually brought him up on my chair while I watched TV and he always slept well until this past week or so and I would lift him up and lay him across my chest where he would sleep so peacefully. I remember hearing that a restless baby would calm down when laying on your chest because she could here your heartbeat and it was calming. I did this very often now. When it was bedtime I would lay on my back and he would lay across my chest and his muzzle would be just under my ear and I would listen to him snore. When he would wake thirsty,I would lean him on my knee and hold the bowl of water for him so that he could quench that crazy thirst then we would lie back again and he would sleep soundly. He couldn’t walk any longer but I was okay carrying him wherever we went…to the sink,to the laundry (which he really seemed to like as he would lay on the freshly dry,warm clothes). He would lay next to his bowl now to eat or I would hold him and feed him but he never gave up his appetite.

I knew at this point,even though I loved carrying him and listening to his wonderfully soft snore,that his quality of life was no longer there and when I made an appointment with the Vet I called them back to keep him another day,making sure he had his fill of rotisserie chicken and water…a clean diaper every hour or so and a good belly and ear scratch. The drive to the Vet in the morning was through tears and I couldn’t stop. I wondered for a minute what people thought if they looked over and realized I was crying but then I looked down at the napping Chester in my arms and my appearance mattered none. When I walked in with him they immediately showed me to a room and I’ll tell you he seemed to be more comforting me than I him. His little head was soaked with my sadness and he licked my hand to let me know all was good. As he passed I could see the life removed from his eyes and I knew he was instantly in a better place…probably running with Scruffy and they would lay together again to nap. When I got home I was so tired and I got in my chair and automatically looked to pull him up in my lap and I wondered how long I would do that. I washed his clothes and set away four of his beds,leaving two out for guests. I know that his little cedar box will contain his ashes and that the outside will be soaked with tears before I place him with Scruffy and Cheech,but his spirit is running and he is doing his circus jumps and those crazy legs are wonderfully crazy free.

Take care of these loved ones you have been gifted. They return your love at least a thousand times more in volume than we could ever give to them.

Rest easy Chester. You will forever be missed and forever loved! Thanks for picking me for your home and lap and for that wonderful snore that made me rest so well.

02.18.2016 141~b

Shine Today™

You Count,as if you were the “only”

dali-clock

William J Corbett

In a world so full of people,we often feel insignificant…or worse we don’t feel.
“How could anyone realize I have great potential when others have so much more to give?”
“I’m too old.”
“I missed my chance.”
“Someone probably already used my great idea.”
 
Please remember this…
You are a significant individual and everything you do,everything,is witnessed by the One that matters. The One that we strive to see and please.
The One we should try to please because we spend a rather insignificant amount of time here on earth in these bodies. If we only figure how much time the earth and stars have been here,in years,before we were even born…the ratio of an old,old man or womans age is negligible.
It is scientifically figured that the planet earth is 4.543 billion years old. If I figured this correctly it is written:
4,543,000,000
The greatest fully authenticated age to which any human has ever lived is 122 years 164 days.
Subtracting the greatest age on record from the age of the planet Earth shows the planet has been here 4,542,999,877.6 years longer than this life…which is why I write the time we spend here is insignificant. Insignificant only to the number of years included in forever,yet very significant to the One. He notices and counts every tear we shed. Knows the count of the hairs on our head every second. Knows how well we treated the other gifts he has placed in our lives. Knows how we treat those who treat us unkindly,even if they treat us horribly…He notes how we have treated them.
That doesn’t quite seem fair now does it?
What is most probably my weakest attribute,tolerance,is what will get me into trouble when I leave this earth.I try my hardest to allow kindness be radiated to everyone,yet when I am faced with “difference” from how I was raised or how I really feel deep down inside about something, I can become unbudgeable(?). I want to see and feel that I affect everyone in a positive manner and that my view may be, simply put, of my best intentions.
I surely want to look on His face and to feel the radiation of His glory. I want to witness and be in the company of the Saints and Angels. Imagine how you would marvel at the size and majesty of Michael,the Archangel. It would bring automatic knowledge of how very powerful He is and why He is the one attributed to the safety of Heaven. To become companion to the Saints from our age…Saint John Paul II,soon to be Saint (Mother) Teresa. To have the knowledge strike you of why He chose Mary to be the Holy Mother of Jesus, of why He chose Saint Joseph, a carpenter, to be His earthly father and guardian.
Guess what other knowledge you will have automatically gifted?
You and I will know why we were chosen to be in our skin, at this particularly perfect time for us to be here. What our mission from Him was and whether or not we succeeded to the extent He had wished in His will. We will have exact knowledge of how we treated His gifts…
from His viewpoint.
How scary was that last thought?
We will then also know His mercy and to what extent He forgives us,loves us and welcomes us.
I want to be sure that no matter the few number of my years compared to the magnanimity of Alpha and Omega,beginning and end,that I offered enough and invested and divested of myself in enough ways that He feels His return in His investment was sound and inviting enough for me to stand with Him.
God loves you and there is nothing you can do about it!
~b
Shine Today™

Determined to Cry

Hospice Logo

William J Corbett

There are times when we can’t be happier and feel we may burst. Myself,I look to the Heavens and thank God for such feelings. I know that nothing could have been gifted from any less than Him and I am always humbled, knowing I deserved much less. Daily I pray,as do most of my kind…that one day we will return to Him and be made that home in Heaven with our relatives and friends that we were told about. Jesus had said,”I go now to prepare a place for you. In my Fathers house there are many rooms. Why would I have told you this if it weren’t true?”.

Todays world is a much different place. Although,not much different is the world among close-hearted family and friends. If someone were to tell you something significantly different than what you believed to be true,you may choose to go along and see, sometimes finding that they had led us astray for their own good. When we have heart-strings to someone, though, and they say this same thing,”Why would I tell you so if it weren’t true?”…in these words we know that they have told us the very truth they would bleed as in fact the truth is their blood.

It is in these types of relationships that we are torn in two. I have read that there were times when people lived hundreds of years. They were Blessed and probably yearned for the day they could leave here,too. Their knowledge is something that can not be replaced. Small bits of it may be gifted to those close to them,yet what they have learned had to come to them in a way they could understand, in a way they could keep and use the knowledge. Everyday I hear people that use quotes…I am sure we all hear them and some repeat them. The wise words from Alaskan Proverbs to Buddha. Maya Angelou and Mother Theresa. The Dalai Lama and the Rev Martin Luther King.

How is it that some people understand us to our very soul?

How is it that so few can put into words how we can only feel?

Why is it when we speak with our peers or those younger than us,we understand their smile to mean so many different levels of understanding yet when we speak to our elders and they smile, we know they understand?

It is in this gift of understanding that we truly realize our greatest wealth is in our elders. Some have lived through economic depressions the size that we can not imagine.It is in these depressions that they learn what natural resources mean in every day life. My mother in law,Norah,God rest her soul,could not throw away used tin foil. She would fold it and store it in a drawer. Bread bags never went to the trash as we may need them to keep our feet dry and insulated. Drains were never plugged from the bacon grease being poured down them. It was saved for use in a next meal or for baking something. My grandfather Albert used to fish the Niagara river every day to bring meals to his family and when he was Blessed he would bring food for his neighborhood. They bartered for goods. He would repair something and be paid in chickens.

Can you imagine?

World wars…not one or two countries involved in decades long killings but real “world” wars. The killings are no less significant in any war,but when the whole world is at war, every country feels it right down to every citizen that knows all of their men and women,most of them still children of their late teens and early twenties are involved and may never be seen alive again.

Our elders…

It is in them that we have learned most everything. It is by their advice or by their silence that we have learned the most reactive things in our lives. It is in them that we hope and it is them who we keep hearing long after they have gone. Many of the funniest and some of the saddest situations involve them in our lives. As my mother lay unresponsive in her bed, I wondered why we don’t live for hundreds of years any longer. I didn’t feel we should have to let go of our loved ones so soon. My idea of “so soon” would probably be much different than hers, having survived through a great depression,a world war and several other smaller wars,lack of medicine and medical knowledge the likes that took her baby brother Joseph of “dropsy” when he was an infant.Raising seven children and helping raise her grandchildren. Suddenly losing her husband of fifty-plus years and the dementia that had set in to rob her of clear thought and not able to realize why things no longer made sense and she couldn’t speak what she had wanted, often explaining she could no longer find the words that were “right there” but could not be harnessed for her use.

It is our elders who make us, form us, are our greatest protectors.

It is our elders for whom we feel the greatest loss at their return to God and His heavenly home. It is at this time when we gather the many albums of photographs and retrieve the memories they had thought to save. We remember each moment from the click of the shutter we hadn’t heard,yet we hold it in our hand and it is an indelible mark in our minds of that moment and the few seconds that surrounded it. In these photos we set a precedent in our minds allowing these fine memories to blot out anything else of their lives, of our lives with them,and the happiness they had brought to us.

They are Angels now and will persevere in prayer for us to one day move again to their side and I am sure they feel humbled by our tears and thoughts. They also know how it feels to bask in the glory of God. I am sure they feel we should save our tears as they have no longer any commitment to a deteriorating body and they now have their questions answered in full.

Mommy

God rest your beautiful soul Patricia Hawke. You are surely in His presence and He has graded you and found you lacking in nothing. Your beauty never faded and from deep within,you have always lived. Knowing that the best teacher lives her word,you did this and you have shined for all to follow in the light you knew best. Thank you!

Pray for us until we meet again.

I wish you peace!

~b

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