Thought For The Day 07/06/12

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The Thing We All Face

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Who will tell whether one happy moment of love or the joy of breathing or walking on a bright morning and smelling the fresh air, is not worth all the suffering and effort which life implies. 

Erich Fromm

http://www.quotegarden.com/life.html

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Recently, both in my personal as well as my professional life, I have borne witness to the heartbreak of loss….many of those losses far too early in what constitutes time as we know it to exist. And perhaps it is because I am broadening my horizons in terms of my faith, but it seems I am being called upon more and more to lend both solace as well as spiritual support to those who feel as if their hearts have been ripped from their chests. I have shared tears of grief. I have offered prayers. I have posted videos and music meant to console and ease the pain that is being felt. I have even posted comedy bits for some who seem to gain some measure of solace from laughing again at the things that brought them so much shared joy with the one they loved but lost!

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Mourning is an incredibly personal experience for us all, even between family members within the same household. There is no explaining it. It simply is what it is and the stages are traveled through at a different pace for everyone. Some seem to be glued to the anger part as if somehow hating God and everyone else might just sap the little strength they have left.  In its place, they seek to form a cocoon of numbness in an attempt to insulate themselves from the pain of a heart that is empty. The denial part is something I see increasingly these days. This is happening more and more before death has even snatched life from the one we love. We refuse to see what is plainly in front of our faces, instead sometimes pushing the one we care about far beyond what is physically possible for them. Denial only serves to rob us of the quality time where we could and should be discussing the important things, tying up loose ends, putting our affairs in order and saying I Love You before the time comes to say goodbye. Mourning, you see, doesn’t only haunt us in the days following the ceasing of the heart. It is often a journey embarked on well in advance of the time when weeks left to live turn into seconds.

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Our time here is finite. It was our destiny to die even from the moment we first drew breath. And while we hope that death comes calling while we are comfortably and peacefully asleep in our beds at some advanced age, this is usually not the reality we face. Death respects no age or faith or gender. And while we who profess belief in the Almighty know in our heads that what awaits us is more glorious that anything we could ever dream possible, the very human side of us quivers and quakes in fear at the prospects of that which, in reality, is the realm of the unknown. So how do we navigate these uncharted waters we all must sail through? Educate yourself! Talk to your medical team and make sure they explain everything to you in a way you understand. It’s amazing what a little knowledge can do to allay our fears.

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Decide on a time for a family conference. Decide what it is the person who is sick wants and decide if it is something you can support. Talk about the kind of care you want and where you want to get it. Do you want aggressive care where you are kept alive at all costs? Do you want to be resuscitated if your heart stops? Or do you simply want to be kept pain-free and comfortable? Putting all your cards on the table in terms of your expectations up front saves confusion down the road and can keep those who are left behind from guilt and confusion should they need to make decisions if you can not speak for yourself! Understanding that there is no right or wrong nor absolutes can be very reassuring. You might panic if a crisis occurs and you flip-flop, suddenly deciding you now want aggressive care where once you wanted to be at home surrounded by the laughter of wee ones. That is fine. It is your life, your call and your choice! Always hope for the best because we know miracles happen all the time, but always, ALWAYS prepare for the possibility that your answer from the Almighty might just be no.

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 “Let  not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s  house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to  prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come  again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. And you know  the way to where I am going.”

John 14:1-4

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Copyright © 2011-2012 “MandysPath” Ministry

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About Mandy Bruscella

Mandy's Story: As a Registered Professional Nurse with Certification in a number of specialties including home care, I was afforded the opportunity of working closely with various Social Service Agencies in NY and NJ. ~ A lifelong Christian, I was ordained as a Presbyterian deacon in 1993 and, after relocating to SC in 2000, elected to become ordained as a non-denominational minister. ~ I established "MandysPath" Ministry in 2011. "MandysPath" Ministry is a member of Pacific Life Church, El Sobrante, CA, network of ministries. ~ I direct an outreach ministry in an alternative setting, providing spiritual care to a congregation of more than 500 people from around the world via the Internet. ~ As part of this outreach, I write a daily faith based blog. In March, 2012 I was asked to become a board member of Heroes For Children which is a non-profit foundation, established to assists the Guardian ad Litem program of Horry County, SC. Guardians ad Litem are a group of court appointed advocates who represent the best interests of children in Family Court proceedings involving allegations of abuse or neglect. Working closely with these men and women who make a difference in the lives of children, I completed training and have been sworn in to serve as a Guardian ad Litem for the state of South Carolina . ~ I have been married since 1975 to a wonderful man, Daniel. I have a son Daniel and his wife Melissa who live in NYC. My daughter Sabrina and my grandson Landon live here in SC. ~ My father Harold continues to share his wisdom with me and is responsible for many of the ideas I write about!

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