Sometimes I have to remind myself, DonnaMarie you are capable, willing, and engaged but, don’t take on more than you can achieve effectively.
The truth is we all benefit when we care about our neighbors and see ourselves as part of a community. If you can help – do it – lend a hand, you never know when you may be the one in need. We can solve problems together by becoming aware of and addressing the issues that affect our lives. I believe we ultimately exist to leave the world a better place than we found it.
It makes me chuckle whenever friends remark, “You’re everywhere!” I am very involved in politics and advocacy in my community and feel it’s important to do everything I can to affect positive change and a better quality of life for everyone. However, my charge is to remind myself when feeling stressed out by current events and commitments that I can do anything but, not everything.
As a cancer survivor, I’m very passionate about life and its fragility. I’ve been blessed so it’s important for me to pay it forward. I strive to be aware and knowledgeable about what’s going on personally, not just reading about it or listening to what pundits have to say. As I tell my sister all the time, what you see and read doesn’t do justice to the hard work and engaged reality of those of us on the ground; interacting and being strategic about confronting real-world issues.
So, today as I sit here reflecting, I’m reminding myself to breathe in, breathe out and learn how to live with the nature of balance.
I love being an Advocate with the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network! I’m blessed to be a survivor of Colon and Breast Cancer and honored to be a voice for the voiceless.
On September 25, 2018, more than 25,000 Lights of Hope – each decorated with the name of a friend or loved one impacted by cancer will circle the reflecting pool in front of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. Please join me and be part of this special event.
You can help support cancer research and funding by purchasing a $10 Luminary Bag on my Lights of Hope personal page:
An awesome friend shared this serene, jazzy, cool and funky piece of music to serve as a respite from the day to day crazy. I told him this will be my go-to number when the world pushes me to scream.
I hope we are all taking moments to breathe, meditate, and count our blessings. Our spirits are more infinite than this temporary corporal home. In order to do what we need to and stand up and fight for humanity and justice, we need all the energy, love and positive vibes we can muster.
I feel it, my friends do too; stress. Unrelenting, daily stress in response to all the negative energy permeating our planet. Our world needs healing, and in the passionate pleas of Michael Jackson, “There are people dying if you care enough for the living make a better place for you and for me.”
This song is a poignant reminder that we are a community of souls and are charged with taking care of one another. When people feel it’s okay to turn their back on pain and suffering, we lose our humanity.
Where we live in the world should not matter. What our religion or creed is should not matter. And this fabrication of race, should surely not matter.
We all could use some major healing in the midst of the chaos and hate enveloping the country. People are hurting and afraid. We should be coming from a place of love, not hate and resentment.
Just like Michael said: “Heal the world, make it a better place, for you and for me and the entire human race”.
The sad and shocking news of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain taking their lives last week reminds me that we don’t know another’s pain; no matter how blessed we believe they are.
Their tragic deaths also triggered reflection on all the pain and sadness enveloping our country in reaction to unrelenting and overwhelming hate not only here but around the world. Alcohol and drug abuse serve to mask or deal with the incredible despair people experience daily. And, for some, suicide as the final resolution.
Our world is crying out in pain.
As an Advocate for the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, friends watching my dedication to making a better world often check in and remind me to get a massage or stay away from the madness for 24 hours; being an activist is a tremendous weight and source of stress. “You see and deal with it every day; don’t forget to take care of you.”
Wise words indeed! Thanks, for the love.💗💜
I’m blessed with an incredible circle of friends and family but, that doesn’t make me immune to sadness or grief. The reality is countless people feel misunderstood and judged on how they deal with their circumstances and emotions. I don’t believe the pain in an individual’s soul can be explained; merely embraced with love and support.
Today, I pray we can all embrace our “humanness” with compassion, understanding our shared struggle in this complicated journey called life.
In times like these, a mantra I embrace is that attitude is everything. Living a conscious life with intention and purpose. In the words of Buddha:
Collectively we have the ability to create the world we wish to live in. What we visualize, we internalize and what we internalize dictates what we realize.
“You have within you right now, everything you need to deal with whatever
Each and every day I choose to live my life without fear; understanding that taking chances and keeping faith through adversity is to grow as a person and citizen of the world. Fear makes some people commit heinous acts and is responsible for so much suffering in people’s lives. Fear can prevent us from speaking out when seeing a wrong or blaming some “other” for our problems.
But, living fearlessly can open infinite possibilities. Believe and realize your dreams. Reach out and understand that a simple smile can brighten someone’s day. Adjust your attitude to a positive point of view and create the life you seek.
Take the leap and have faith. Destiny lies in your hands.
Today as I celebrate 63 years of blessings I find myself feeling blissfully emotional about all the love and grace I’ve received on my “Miracle Day”. I call it “Miracle Day” because we are all little miracles favored by God to exist.
Last night watching Janet Jackson accept her Billboard Icon Award I took a pause and thought, wow, what a career and accomplishments; what have I done? At that same moment I slapped myself and said – girl, what is your deal, you have been blessed in a myriad of ways and never, ever, ever, base your life in comparison to someone else’s! (You don’t know their “back” story – might NOT want it.)
My accomplishments can’t be measured by trophies or ceremonies, they are living legacies to love, peace, and humanity; two amazing spirits I’ve been blessed to be called mom!
“Fragile is Man, his strength found in boundless love.” DonnaMarie
More blessings of a soulmate of over 40-years. Thank you, honey, for your boundlessness. ♥
Thanks so much to everyone for all the birthday wishes and expressions of love you’ve shared with me today; my spirit has been nourished and my heart is forever grateful!
My favorite quote. I follow the teachings of Buddha and this perspective is the first intention I see every morning. It hangs in my bedroom in a place of prominent so as to always catch my eye. These words set my day on the path of happiness and gratitude to live my life like it’s precious – “golden”.
When people ask how my morning is going I say awesome! I was blessed to see another sunrise and be surrounded by the love and support of my wonderful family, and friends. It’s an absolutely beautiful day!
This Jill Scott tune from 2004, “Livin’ my life like it’s golden”, is all about living each day with joy; owning the richness of life and how amazing it is. Blessed and highly favored, happiness and abundance are yours!
I’m taking my freedom Pulling it off the shelf Putting it on my chain Wear it around my neck I’m taking my freedom Putting it in my car Wherever I choose to go It will take me far
I’m livin’ my life like it’s golden Livin’ my life like it’s golden Livin’ my life like it’s golden, golden Livin’ my life like it’s golden Livin’ my life like it’s golden, golden
I’m taking my own freedom Putting it in my song Singing loud and strong Grooving all day long I’m taking my freedom Putting it in my stroll I’ll be high-steppin‘ y’all Letting the joy unfold
I’m holding on to my freedom Can’t take it from me I was born into it It comes naturally I’m strumming my own freedom Playing the god in me Representing his glory Hope he’s proud of me
Livin’ my life like it’s golden It really matters to me, oh
When I saw this video on Facebook I couldn’t help the tremendous smile that came across my face as I reveled in the sublime joy of this little lady.
She was present in the moment and oblivious to judgment and the others around her. This is what I call purity of being; or as they used to say in church when I was growing up – “being filled with the holy spirit.” I must have played this proud mom’s video at least 5 times straight including grabbing my husband for the “must watch” this adorable video.
I often remark that kids have no filter. They speak the truth, and as a mom myself, manage to embarrass us at just the right moment. For example, in the grocery store line: Daughter: “What does it mean when you hold up your middle finger?” Me: “It’s not nice and it’s being mean to the other person.” Daughter: (collapsing all her fingers except the middle) “But, what if my fingers accidentally fall down like this?” Me: “Just happen to?” as I notice the cashier with a giant size grin on her face. See what I mean? That incident happened over 30 years ago but I can remember it as clear as ever.
Just like the mom that posted the video, we all share in the joy of our children and achieve a space of pure bliss. This little girl will always be a reminder for me to celebrate my happiness and keep firm in the commitment that no one’s gonna steal my joy!
Having a conversation with a girlfriend the other evening about what kind of legacy we want to leave and what our lives are meant for started me re-examining my own life.
Seems lately that every day all day I see infomercials for buying final expense life insurance to make it easier, at least financially, for your loved ones when you pass.
The existential conversation about life and death can be quite complicated. Running the gamut of you live, you die, and that’s it, to a belief in an afterlife, maybe even reincarnation. I’m one who believes in the karmic synergy of the universe and that life on earth is just a way station. Our evolution as humans come from an understanding that our purpose is to learn gratitude, understand we are part of a whole and that what we do to others we do to ourselves.
Surviving cancer has given me a renewed relationship with my own mortality. I don’t fear death, it’s part of the human experience. I believe we were sent here to understand that we are reflected in the faces of others and that we are our brother’s keeper. In totality, we should aspire to our highest self.
My sadness about departing my physical body comes from the separation, no longer being able to hang out with my family and friends; enjoying precious time together. But, my new consciousness evokes a more incredible point – the amazing reality that I ever existed at all!
We are all miracles; chosen for an existence on earth. My greatest wish for humankind is that we embrace the fact our lives have an expiration date for the lessons we must learn.
For me, it means being given this amazing gift of life to explore, reflect, and leave this world a little better than I found it. My desire is to achieve my highest self; moving on with a smile on my face from having lived a life of joy with no regrets; clear in the ultimate understanding that every moment is precious so, be present and choose love as a mantra for existence.