Saturday, February 18, 2012


(Photobucket Image)

Egads! I see that I have missed several holidays without acknowledging them on my blog. There were Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year, and even Valentine's Day celebrations. As the silly little image above says,  I now wish you  "Happy Everything"!

My only excuse is that I was extremely self-absorbed with a lot of minor ailments, and I didn't want my depressed mood to seep into anything I wrote. We've had so many spring-like days, sunshine, warm temperatures, and some glorious, much-needed rain, it is hard not to be in a good mood. I'm also feeling better. It makes me wonder which comes first -- the good mood or the  physical well-being. People smarter than I have pondered this mind/body connection and still have not come up with a definitive answer. Dr. Herbert Benson's book, The Relaxation Response, published in the late 70s, brought credence to the theory that we can heal many of our ailments with our mind by learning the "relaxation response", which is very much like meditation or self-hypnosis. Around the same time, Norman Cousins cured himself of what he was told was an "incurable" and "irreversible" disease by working in tandem with his doctor, massive doses of Vitamin C, and laughter, which he brought on by watching funny movies, such as the Marx Brothers' films. He documented all of this in his book Anatomy of an Illness. These are just a couple of the early mainstream books to discuss the subject. And who can forget Norman Vincent Peale's The Power of Positive Thinking?

Just this week there were reports on the news about the latest research into the effects of anti-depressants, which are accompanied by many undesirable side-effects. The recent studies show that, in most cases, depressed patients get better just as quickly when given a placebo pill as when they are on an anti-depressant drug - even when they are told it is a placebo or "sugar pill". Of course, there are exceptions with cases of extreme mental/emotional problems. No one should ever cease taking prescribed medication without talking to their physician.

"You become what you think about all day long." Emerson had a good understanding of the mind/body connection, as do some modern day spiritual traditions. Unity and the Church of Religious Science come to mind. Also, one of the most popular ministers in the U.S. today, Joel Osteen, understands these principles. He fills his sermons with a lot of positive affirmations, using Biblical references to relate to. He is teaching that if one does nothing but dwell upon problems of any kind - physical, financial, emotional, etc. - one locks himself into a negative, self-defeating condition in life. In other words, "What you focus on increases!" Best to hold positive, healing, loving, abundant thoughts in mind! And of course, "Let go and let God."

If I believe these observations -- and I do -- why did my complaints linger so long? I've had over twenty years of Unity teachings under my belt, and should know better by now. I believe it's because for over ten years I have not lived near people who believe and practice these same principles. I have been spending way too much time alone or with folks with differing beliefs! The one big exception is the time I spend with Community Kitchen and the volunteers there. Now that I am feeling better, and I know I don't have anything contagious, I am going back more frequently. The loving energy there is palpable. I also felt better when I volunteered at Hope's Closet, but I haven't been there in a few months.

Travis, Carajean, Kelly

Another reason for my recuperation and lifted spirits is a visit from my daughter, Carajean. We had nearly four fun-filled days together earlier this month. While she was here, daughter-in-law Amy and grandchildren Travis and Kelly joined us for one day and night. We all had a good time playing games, eating, and watching movies. One day Carajean and I stayed in our pajamas all day long. The bed didn't even get made. I don't recall that happening in many years!

Amy and Carajean

These two gals outlasted me, and stayed up late playing dominoes. They even cleaned the kitchen so I could get my beauty sleep. They are both so youthful and beautiful that they can get away with late hours from time to time with no after-effects!

Next weekend we are going on a journey together. Oldest grandson Cameron is performing in his Senior recital at LSU in Baton Rouge. His mom and dad will join us there from Dallas. Carajean is flying to Austin, where she, son Matthew, Amy, and I will drive to Baton Rouge. It's over 7 hours to get there, so it's a good thing we all love each other! Needless to say, Cameron is pleased to have such a big family turnout for this special occasion. This past week he performed with the LSU A Cappella Choir in Plano, Texas. My oldest granddaughter, Audrey (a senior at SMU) was among family members who attended that performance.

(Cameron and Audrey)

Due to the isolation and ailments I suffered the past few months, I broke my "news fast" and gorged on all of the cable newscasts. I could not help getting caught up in all the GOP primary coverage. Some of it would be funny if it weren't so scary. I'll cover this in my next blog post. I'm so angry over the recent women's rights issues I probably couldn't keep from being overly insulting of the people involved. That is no way to keep up my positive attitude and assist my continued healing!

Peace and love,