Saturday, August 31, 2013

A (PERSONAL) PATHWAY TO ''WELLNESS''


Getting Better
 
I've Noticed I've Been Downsizing
My Fears
They Seem To Be Less In Size
Each Year

From Luggage Size
To Knapsack
To Fanny Pack
To Wallet
Just Getting Smaller
Maybe Next Year I'll Keep Them
In My Pocket
I'm Just NOT Sure

But, That Opens A Can of Worms
Within Itself

For Years I Kept My Hand In My Pocket
Because Of Fear
Being Born Without Four Fingers
Was My Reason For Hiding

I Didn't Think I Was Good Enough
NOW I Know That's Not True

Over The Years, My Hand
Hasn't Changed Much
But My Attitude Towards It
Certainly Has

What Was Once Huge
Is Very Manageable
My Whole Perspective
And Quality Of Interaction
Have Just Gotten Better

I Know It's Been Said
Many Times and in Many Ways
But, ''It's Amazing What A Little
Self-Acceptance Will Do''

Sunday, August 25, 2013

THE UNPREDICTABLE WHEELCHAIR


 The Unpredictable Wheelchair
 
 Does It Really Matter To You
Where I Write My Masterpiece?
I Could Be Sitting Here or There,
But, You Wouldn't Know,
Or Would You?

 If I Am Not Comfortable
It May Be Different

If There's Something Impinging Itself
You Will Know About It
If I'm Sitting Wrong
My Poem Will Testify To That

 The Poems I Write Have Much To Do
With My Comfort Level
If Things Aren't Right,
Then We'll ALL Have A Lousy Day.

 And That's Today's MASTERPIECE...

It's Called
''OUCH!''

Saturday, August 10, 2013

FRUSTRATION TO LIKING WHERE WE ARE!

FRUSTRATION to

LIKING WHERE WE ARE!

 


---I think that most folks are very frustrated. They are frustrated from NOT reaching their potentials and functioning at their highest possible level. They are NOT quite being who they really are and what is really possible for them.

---Most folks are settling in a sense. I think that NOT knowing what they are capable of…factors in very strongly. Folks are, usually, NOT presented with choices that would increase their ability and don’t know how to make proper choices to stay present, where they are.

---To live and love in the present moment…seems to be optimal. So, taking this to be a true statement…we must concede that most folks aren’t living in the present moment when that is where they are ALL THE TIME. What’s wrong? Why is this the case?

---I feel that most choices presented to folks are NOT for the present moment. Most effects of the choices people make, propel them elsewhere…like a pinball bouncing around.

---People have to make choices based on what brings them into the present moment. It is the ‘’choiceless awareness’’ that is in the present. The result of the choice always leads one away. If one likes and enjoys WHAT HE DOES, where he is, then he will stay. If one is NOT comfortable with where he is…then he will always find himself going elsewhere. This is how we go from being a ‘’frustrated’’ being into…WHO WE ARE, where we are.

---When we do things that we enjoy doing…IT GIVES OUR LIVES QUALITY. It works from the inside - OUT. When we do things we like, we will enjoy being where we are. If we wait until we enjoy the place that we are…before we begin doing things that we like to do - we may find ourselves spending much of the time ‘’waiting and hating’’ where we are. This can apply to the way that we view our relationship to the world and universe, itself. Take Care.

.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

PEOPLE ARE NOT INTERCHANGEABLE


PEOPLE ARE NOT
INTERCHANGEABLE 

---People are NOT the same. I will grant that we ALL have the same emotions and we ALL pick and choose from the same racks. We usually have some relationship with the trendy things, but when push comes to shove, I find that I tend to spend my time with people I prefer to be with.

---That is not to say that I don't care for everyone, It is just saying that some ''float my boat,'' better. These are the ones I spend more time with. The others fit in the, ''live and let live,'' compartment. I don't think that there is anything unusual about this.

---If you have a relationship with different people, you will see that the make up of one can be entirely different, than another. Each may push your buttons differently. You will find you prefer one over another. It is next to impossible to prefer everyone the same. This may occur at those times we would rather be alone, but even then our preferences come back into it.

---What I do find unusual, is that I think at the facility I live - there is a belief that ALL people are the same. The belief is that the residents are the residents...and that is about as far as it goes. IN TRUTH...we are very different as is everyone else, but, when push comes to shove...we somehow all get lumped together.

---I'm sure that it was much worse in days gone by, but there weren't people like myself (and others) who brought it up a lot. From my na├»ve vantage point...I would think that everyone concerned are NOW happier because a happier hospital is land ahoy AND in vision. But, it must be a different vision than I'm seeing than those with clout are looking for. It is very frustrating.

--- I really thought that those with clout would see that to Enjoy Living (that means the resident/patient) would have to Be Heard + Taken Seriously. That would happen and changes would follow.  COMPLETELY NAIVE on my part. That seems to have gone over the heads of many people (with clout) at the hospital. I realize, now, that it must be something else that they are looking for.

---If they ever get around to stuff I care about...let me know. They are far too complicated for me. I plan on writing some more. That I can't seem to help. But knowing how to play in their game has got me stumped. Take Care.




''People Are Only Interchangeable...if you have NO relationship to them! One size does NOT fit all!''

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

BE WHO WE ARE


BEING WHO WE ARE AND

NOT WHO WE THINK WE ARE SUPPOSED TO BE

 


---I think many people are caught up in this. Many of us are in pursuit of what we think we should be and never find the treasure that exists inside. Often we are told to modify our behavior and ''act'' in a good way or ''polite'' way, at the ''cost'' of being ourselves. We seek ''approval'' at our own expense. Children seem to be especially accosted in this way. It's where the mold takes shape.
.

 ---I am a firm ''believer'' in what we have within, and once people have cleaned out their muck and mire, they will be naturally good--and it Won't Be Acting. Folks will finally realize that being yourself is the best that you can be and it is important to be intelligent in your actions. All of us have this to go through. It is not an ''easy'' thing to do, but the benefits outweigh any ''hardships'' one may encounter.

---Many times our families and relations have such a hold on us that we act in a way that ''pleases'' them or in some cases ''rebels'' to what they think, as opposed to who and what we would naturally do if we were ''free'' of all of this. Don't fret too much as our parents and relations, themselves, are probably caught in this, also, from their parents, relations, etc. Also, though, this does not excuse their behavior, either, or make it any easier. Work this out or get this worked out, forgive them, forgive yourself and move on.

---Much of the time we find ourselves competing and comparing ourselves to others instead of ''being'' who we are. As long we are faring better than our neighbor, or the next guy, we can ''feel'' we are doing alright. We put much stock in being in the Status Quo of things. Unfortunately, we accept pettiness as a reaity, instead of discovering and uncovering the Truth we have inside ourselves.

---Find what is inside and don't settle. Don't get yourself caught in the point of view that is the ''common'' one. Realize what You have Within. Begin by telling yourself the Truth and watch it blossom. It starts there, Within Yourself. No matter how trivial it may ''sound'' at first, You will unravel the mysteries of Who You Are and ''Life'' itself, eventually. Be Well.
[Originally written in summer of 2007]
 

Sunday, July 7, 2013

CHOOSE TO BE HAPPY - WQ


.
I woke up early today, excited over all I get to do before the clock strikes midnight. I have responsibilities to fulfill today. I am important. My job is to choose what kind of day I am going to have.

Today I can complain because the weather is rainy or I can be thankful that the grass is getting watered for free.

Today I can feel sad that I don't have more money or I can be glad that my finances encourage me to plan my purchases wisely and guide me away from waste.

Today I can grumble about my health or I can rejoice that I am alive.

Today I can be sad that I can’t walk or be happy that I have a power wheelchair that makes me very mobile.

Today I can be sad that I have one hand w/one finger or be happy that most things are push button and not rotary.

Today I can lament over all that my parents didn't give me when I was growing up or I can feel grateful that they allowed me to be born.

Today I can cry because roses have thorns or I can celebrate that thorns have roses.

Today I can be unhappy over the substandard food or be glad that I am fed regularly.

Today I can mourn my lack of friends or I can excitedly embark upon a quest to discover new relationships.

Today I can whine because I have to go to work or I can shout for joy because I have a job to do.

Today I can complain because I have to go to school or eagerly open my mind and fill it with rich new tidbits of knowledge.

Today I can murmur dejectedly because I have to do housework or I can feel honored because there is shelter for my mind, body and soul.

Today stretches ahead of me, waiting to be shaped. And here I am, the sculptor who gets to do the shaping. What today will be like is up to me. I get to choose what kind of day I will have!
.
 

GOOD THOUGHT: ---Your odds of having a good day will increase dramatically if you choose to put a smile on your face as soon as you wake up in the morning. Not only will it start you on a positive path, but it will remind you that the world is yours to see however you want to see it. It can be boring and annoying, or it can be delightful and fascinating. IT IS UP TO YOU! It is too easy to let other people tell you how to feel. How about making yourself feel like you want to feel.

Monday, June 24, 2013

AFFIRMATION


''AFFIRMATION''

 
---When we ''AFFIRM'' something, we are saying it is alright, it is okay. When we affirm someone we are also saying that the person is alright or okay. When we affirm someone and they feel it, we are actually telling them or even giving that person ''Permission'' to take his ''Next Step.''

---It is so easy to stagnate, to stay where we are without much growth in our lives. We go through the motions of living, but don't feel very ''Alive.'' Sometimes we need help in taking that next step. Sometimes we are not even sure there is a next step to take.

---There is a light at the end of every tunnel, even if at present we can't see it. As Elizabeth Kubler-Ross is accreditted for - There are 5 stages we ALL go through on the way to Accepting something (pictured above.)

---They are 1] DENIAL,  2] ANGER,  3] BARGAINING,  4] DESPAIR and  5] ACCEPTANCE. She came upon these phases while searching for those things we have in-common when we grieve. These are the stages that bring the ''Light'' into focus.  The stages of ''Acceptance'' and ''Grief'' are the same.
 
                                                           
---We CAN ''Stagnate'' as we move along these lines. Sometimes we Deny so furtively, that we just stay ''Shallow.'' Sometimes we are just Angry, not even knowing what we are so pissed-off about, but just figure we are angry people. In the Bargaining phase, we find ourselves even making deals with God, saying things like ''If you'll only get me through this, I'll do...(and it is usually something that we have been letting slide for awhile.) Some folks don't go much beyond these points. Having a savvy support system makes a difference in here. You may have bad times, but they will help keep you buoyant enough to continue. Remember: Any suffering that you do will be a product of resisting the changes and wanting to control the changes that you are going through.

---Despair is the last ugly step before Acceptance. It is very natural to not like this stage. We feel helpless. We hate to feel this way. In Despair we know there is nothing we can do about our situation. We handle this the best we can. We suffer to the extent we are attached to a certain outcome. We have to let go of ALL this. We have to learn to ''Trust.'' We grieve for those parts of ''Ourselves'' that are ''Lost'' so as to make ourselves Whole again. We can than see that ''Light'' of Acceptance that has been alluding us all this time. The best way ''around'' something is to go through it.

---By ''Affirming'' each other, we allow the person to take that next step. We like to know that it is really OKAY to STAND where we STAND, and Affirmation brings ''OKAYNESS'' to the table. We sometimes get very scattered and are pulled in many different directions at once. Even at this spot, if we feel affimed, it gives us a place from which to take our next step. When We Are Ready. Affirm each other along the lines of the five stages above, giving others the courage to NOT stagnate too long at any one spot, and watch him or her ''Walk into the Light'' of ''Acceptance or Self-Acceptance.''  Be Well.
.
.
(Written in March, 2006)

Thursday, June 6, 2013

LIVING IN THE PRESENT!


Living in the Present

 
---There are many people who speak about living in the HERE and NOW. What do they mean by that?

---People are in the present moment PHYSICALLY, but very few are actually there MENTALLY at the same time. Some WORRY about what is going to happen, whether it be soon or way down the line.

---Others spend their time thinking of things in the past. It could be some kind of blame where they feel someone is responsible for their circumstance. Or, it could be some kind of GUILT for something they, themselves, may have done that succeeded in making them seem less than perfect.

---Some could be in the present with an agenda to make things happen in a certain way. But, I wonder how many are in the present moment free and clear…just happy to be where they are. Whether in or out of the hospital, I’ll bet we don’t find a lot of people in that category. I find that when people ENJOY what they do, they are in the present moment. Take Care.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

WHY DOES THE BUCK STOP HERE?


 

Mistakes: We've ALL Made Them

 

      ---We all seem to know what this means, but we don't seem to know the implications of it. We are so quick to note that whatever it is that has happened, is first and foremost - Not Our Fault. Then we can seem to breathe easier.

       ---As long as we are not personally responsible for what has happened - Everything Is Alright. If the way things are, can't be hung on me, than there really is NO problem.

       ---The funny thing is, that, I would probably agree. But, that doesn't mean that it is okay to do that. Well, then where does the buck stop?

  


        ---I think that we have to stop trying to pass the buck. Let it end right here. Don't worry about whose fault it is, and use that energy for something more constructive.

        ---Maybe, you can make the result, or victim, of what is wrong, to be alright. Maybe, you can be sure that whatever it is that you're doing, has NO negative implications to someone else. NOBODY is victimized.

        ---In this way, we take responsibility for our own actions and we see them through to the point that no one is hurt in the process. When we care about the outcome, the process becomes important. Whenever everyone involved is happy, or at least - understanding of what's going on, we ALL seem to do better. Don't be afraid to be vulnerable. We ALL know about mistakes. Be Well.
.
(WRITTEN Oct., 2007)

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

''EASIER SAID THAN DONE'' - The WHEELCHAIR QUARTERBACK



Easier Said Than Done -
(Confessions of a Wheelchair Quarterback)
---Why is this statement...True. We know that it is very, true, for the most part. It is much easier being an armchair quarterback, than to, actually, make the very things you discuss, happen.
---As soon as one begins, the naysaying starts. Even if what you say makes perfect sense and would do much good, an idea doesn't go too far.
---Nowadays, people are already committed, and to get a bunch, let alone the right bunch, on the same page, is very difficult.
---What I wonder is - Why is this the case? Many have already chosen a life-style, and to make changes becomes, ''an old dog, new tricks,'' situation. People are generally addicted to the way they see things - and it usually is so close and ingrained, that they don't even see anything different.
---Their tends to be a lot of emotional attachment to a status quo. This happens to be another Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Despair and then Acceptance - situation. It is a process of letting-go of the old and allowing something new to take its place.
---Why the first step is so difficult, is that we have chosen to make feeding the family a priority and many times to take jobs and/or positions to meet this end as opposed to what we might do if we were free of all this. So, our emotional attachments keep us from acheiving our potential.
---Alas...a New UPDATE/UPGRADED Ending from the 2008 version (above.) - People and things are changing. They are AWAKENING! People are now doing more fulfilling things.  More efficient! Meaning and purpose have taken on a new priority. It has seemed that the bad economy + condition of our planet has caused folks to reinvent themselves in a way that includes doing the right thing in the process. Corruption still exists, but more people are aware of its futility and its costs. It actually seems that some folks get embarrassed at the thought of taking more than NECESSARY. Or, at least they are more aware of their feelings toward it and ARE speaking out AGAINST IT. Learn to Be Well...again!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

The CLUBHOUSE MODEL


.
---The Clubhouse model is essentially this, (as I see it.) Those on the staff, work alongside of the clients. There is a constant mentoring and teaching going on. The clientele benefit in many ways, by this process. And...so do the staff.
----The Clubhouse is broken into different departments, (working units.) We had units of Clerical, Transitional Employment, Greeters in charge of telephone and buzzing people in, Socialization, Computers, etc. The client and staff person would work side-by-side...with benefits to both sides.

---We need something of the same at LHH, in my etimation. We need more staff/resident interaction. I, firmly, believe that both sides would benefit.
---I think this should be a pilot program, to see where it all goes. As it stands, now, there are many, many decisions made affecting the resident that does include the presence of a resident. Some of the residents are very astute...but have very little interaction with anyone involved with decisions made.
---If 20 hours are spent in meetings per week, about us I am proposing that one half hour per week, is spent, interacting and getting to know us as individuals. There is much done FOR us, but NOT much done WITH us. It is more of a me vs. them place, and not an us space. I believe that this is an We Are ALL In This, Together, World...and we have no more room for a me vs. them attitude. This is not true in all cases all the time, but the me vs. them mindset seems to pervade too often.
---If the Hospital, were more a, ''We Are ALL In This, Together,'' place...I think it would be MORE therapeutic. There then would be a pervasive mindset, that was more true...then a me vs. them, mindset. I think that the idea of Resident-Centered Care, would be more accurate, too.
.
---If a new Clubhouse is to be constructed...the staff would not only know their people, but they would work on the design together, wherever possible.
.
(written in Nov., 2008)

Monday, May 27, 2013

HOMELESSNESS vs. HOUSELESSNESS


 
CONSIDER THIS...

HOMELESSNESS VS. HOUSELESSNESS

 ---About 4 or 5 years ago, I wrote an Article for ''Voices At Bay'' (a Michael Wise Publication.) It was called Homelessness vs. Houselessness. The point I was trying to make was that people seem to use the terms as being the same, while the two are very different. In our City, in particular, the term Homeless really speaks about those who are Houseless.
---Houseless means that we don't have a dwelling, a place to put our things, a place to sleep, hang our hat, get our mail, etc. Homeless can be a very different situation or ''condition.''. It can be a person who is not at Home, whether he has a House or not. There is a warm feel to the place we call our ''Home.''
---I am sure we have ALL experienced people who seem at Home, no matter where they are. They are generally comfortable with themselves and comfortable to be around. They are at ''Home'' with themselves.
---It comes down to ones acceptance of his circumstances and the situations he finds himself and, when we go a bit deeper, we can see that is the acceptance of ones ownself, or self-acceptance. After all, ''Home is where the Heart is.''        
---I made the analogy that some people can be at ''Home'' in a ''Cardboard Box'', while there can exist a feeling of Homelessness living in a ''Mansion.'' Feeling at Home where you are at, is a very good way to feel. To be at your most comfortable self, no matter what the circumstance, beats having a seemingly nice circumstance, but it doesn't fit who you really are.. You can feel out of place in the best of places. Like being ''alone in a crowd.''
---The hospital has become the House we live in and is Home to some. The same rules apply here as well. By this, I mean, the more accepting we are of our situation, improves the situation. Continually resisting doesn't seem to work. Know what battles to fight and know the ''best'' way to make the changes you see as necessary. Know ''when to hold 'em and when to fold 'em.''
---I, myself, spent over a week at UCSF, recently. It was all well and good, but when I was released and was brought up the driveway at LHH, I felt like I was coming ''Home.'' I felt more at peace, and there was a familiarity, even with residents I don't know very well, but see around. I found that somehow this ''House'' [LHH] had become my ''Home.'' I can't tell you when it exactly happened. I gave up the place where I had lived in SF, since 1982, about two years ago. The stroke I had June 2, 2002, changed all that.       
---I am aware that there is a temporariness to the circumstance and situation, as ALL things, in time, have that quality. ''All Things do Pass.'' For now, this is the place I call ''Home'', and it seems like a good place to work on being at ''Home with Yourself.'' See you at the ''Candy'' Store or ''Truckin'' the hallways. Be Well and Happy Holidays.
.
(WRITTEN IN 2006)

CHANGE


CHANGE: Going From One Mindset To Another.

 
---We have gone through many changes within the walls of the hospital, where we live. The CNA’s have changed, and we see a change in the Resident Council. What kind of things affect the ways in which we deal with these changes.
---It seems the more flexible and open we are to what is happening, plays a major role. The more narrow and set in our ways, then the more difficult, change is.
---Change is inevitable in ALL circumstances, as this is truly the nature of things. We have ALL made many adjustments to changes in our past, and the future holds many more, I don’t doubt. Some even say that the only thing that is constant, IS change.
 ---Each change brings a lot of newness into  our lives. We seem to learn something, in every change. These are the lessons that life itself is teaching us. Our ability to adapt to change, is a quality we all seem to possess. Each birth is a change, and each death is a change. Change is the way that new things come into being. It seems that we may as well go with it, and learn as we go. Learning to adapt to CHANGE, itself, seems very important. Be Well.
 

 

UNENDING STAIRWAY - NO CHANGE!


CREATIVE SELF-EXPRESSION


Creative Self-Expression
.
---Self-Expression itself, is Creative. One only has to look at his ‘’accomplishments,’’ to see the creative quality. It doesn’t go much further than that.
---To utilize the creative ebb within us ALL, we must be honest with ourselves. It is all well and good to say we should be honest, but let’s look at why we are not honest, in the first place.
---We are not usually honest from the outset, because it is usually very difficult and it hurts. I am not saying that honesty is not the best policy, but I‘m saying we are as honest as we can be until it starts to be very difficult. Honesty becomes more difficult, when our self-image is involved.
---Saving face comes into play and our thinking becomes different. We are very protective. There is a conflict between what is really the truth and how we look. Saving face cuts ahead of the line. We find that we tend to exaggerate and tell
tall tales and embellish the truth, so we come out looking pretty good. We don't like to look bad. We do many things to avoid that one. The shoulds and shouldn’ts take second place. We have saving face to contend with.
---Love is the best way, but what does that even mean on the saving face level? Learn to tell the truth to yourself about how you feel. Learn to accept yourself to a greater degree. Learn to appreciate who you are...more. You will find yourself living more creatively. There will be more quality and enjoyment in your life. Be Well.

The Beatles - "Beatles For Sale" (2009 Stereo Remastered) [Full Album]


CATASTROPHIZING



Catastophizing

---Do you catastrophize everything? Do you think that something is wrong with everything? We know that nothing is usually perfect, (if it seems it is...just wait awhile. It won't be.) So, finding the flaw in every plan and idea, sounds like a good thing. Let's see.
---When we catastrophize...we think in the ''what if's,'' a lot. What if this happens or that happens? We are continually looking for the shoe to drop. Or, the other shoe. We aren't satisfied for too, too long. We are waiting for the flaw to kick in.
---But, this is very important. We don't have to look at what happens as something that interferes with our fun. If we know that what we are doing is the right thing to do, then there is no problem. If no one is hurt in the process, and we see others jump on the bandwagon and all is positive, then we have a winner.
---If we begin trampling on someone else in the process, and they counter our move then we have problems. We may have to re-examine our motive and what we are doing.
---It is better for us to involve ourself with people and places that keep things positive. When we start our ''harmless,'' joking, be sure that the brunt of your harmless joke - is laughing, also, and that your comment won't be misconstrued. It is easy to make someone look bad, so we will ''feel,'' good. This is a short-term fix...at best. If you take care of things on this end, you will see yourself catastrophizing a lot less.
---If we find that we spend a lot of time concerning ourselves with the ''faults + flaws'' of others...we can be sure that we will NOT really trust their behavior and worry about their response and reaction on many things. Take Care.

COMPETITION: A HEALTHY SIDE



Competition:

A Healthy Side

 
---We are going to look at the healthy side of competition. I must admit that this is ''new'' to me, as I come from the religious side that begins by making all competition wrong. The less one competes and compare oneself to others, he is more spiritual? What is this competition thing?

---I have noticed that building upon anothers ideas, is the way we have progressed and advanced. The technological evolution has taken this course. In our society, as one competes for supply/demand dollars one improves his product that befit the needs and preferences of the consumer.

---On the consumer side, taking it as a whole, we see him using things and refining as he goes along, until he settles on something that fits him or his lifestyle. His own developement is wrapped up in this, and ideally he reaches his potential through this venture. When he becomes bored with one thing...he moves on. (This puts  boredom in a more positive light, also.)

---Competition can seem to be a very healthy thing to be involved in, but it is, also, left raw and unguarded, enough, to have a downside to fall into. The objective is easily cast aside and one is competing for all the wrong reasons.

---We have said that the positive elements tend to be self-improvement, self-developement, etc., but the negatives are present, too. For instance, stepping all over someone and/or using someone for self-aggrandisement, is not cool. You don't improve if, in the process, you have destroyed another or make the society unliveable for others - by believing one is better than someone else. One is then getting his esteem, by comparing himself with others. When one sees competition in its positive light, NOT falling into getting one's esteem needs met by the process...he has a pretty good recipe.