Omni

Omni means “of all things, in all ways, in all places. This is what God is – the All-Powerful, Always Present, Universal Absolute.

If this is so, as I believe and, dare I say, KNOW it to be, then there is not one single part of me that I will not endeavor to love.

I am choosing love, every day in every way.

…and remarkable, miraculous things are happening…

The One and Only

How easily a feeling or sight caught wind of in this world can blow you down a path of dismay.

How often we accept the distress and then resist it.

Yet, there is only One power and you cannot serve two masters.

If God is Love and the omnipotent force of life, if I am out of sorts and not feeling good, who then must I be serving?

There’s no condemnation to this realization. To be aware of not feeling good is simply a loving call to return to God.

God is everywhere, in everything, at all times.

Like a sponge in a basin of water: the sponge is in the water and the water is absorbed in the sponge. I am a sponge. God is the water. At all times, I am in God and God is in me.

That is reassurance.

Be still and know that I am God.

 

It’s Not Your Job

If I believed myself as whole what need would I have to seek completion outside myself?

The infamous Jerry Maguire line, “You complete me.”, that had women melting with lust for Tom Cruise, is fraught with error and unavoidable failure.

Once you fail to complete me, and you will fail, your usefulness to me will be gone. I will be angry that you failed me and you will suffer the wrath of guilt.

You will have failed to fulfill a role that was never yours to complete.

That’s not Love.

I want nothing more than to recognize my wholeness and release you from your guilt.

I believed myself as incomplete and in so doing made you see that in yourself.

In my wholeness you simply cannot fail since you cannot make complete what was never incomplete.

Post-It Notes for Daily Living

I sit drinking coffee with my friend.

She tells me about her job working with people who have suffered traumatic brain injuries. She details how, for many of her clients, they cannot do simple routine tasks. And not so much that they can’t do them but that they don’t remember to do them. The logical, sequential ability of ordering and accomplishing tasks is lost.

Some know they need groceries but forget to go to the store. Some will get to the store and return without anything they actually needed to get. Some need to take medication but can’t remember what time to take it at. Some don’t know where their mailbox is and can’t even establish a plan for finding it.

My friend’s job is to develop plans and strategies for her clients that will enable them to live their lives as self-sufficiently as possible. She doesn’t aim to do things for her clients, to accomplish their tasks for them. No, her job is to do just enough that will allow them to do what they need to do themselves. Whether it be Post-It note reminders around the house or to-do/get lists (and other strategies far beyond what I know about), she helps her clients help themselves.

To myself, I shake my head, almost unable to imagine what it would be like to not remember such basic functioning for daily life.

But, I am absolutely and humbly aware that I, we, the general population without traumatic brain injuries, are not so different.

My friend and I switch topics and we’re now discussing the state of her apartment and how she feels overwhelmed by the mess of it. She then tells me about a broken filing cabinet that is taking up space and adding to her feelings of a life of clutter.

It’s a humorous conversation. We’re grown adults commiserating about the miseries and annoyances of daily living. I finally suggest to her that one day, today after coffee, all she needs to do is move the filing cabinet from her living room to the back door. Then, two days later on garbage day, simply move the filing cabinet out to the curb. And voila! Clutter begone!

She feels less overwhelmed and agrees to the order of tasks. Three days later, and in record time, she has accomplished a task that had been haunting her for months.

Does my friend have a traumatic brain injury? Not at all. She’s actually a highly-functioning, very intelligent person with a post-secondary degree in social work.

I think about myself now and my weekly meetings with my psychologist (which I have no funds to afford but have concluded that, through a simplified cost-benefit analysis, if I had money right now it would be doing me no good anyway if I’m still suffering in the midst of my major depression).

In my recent meetings with my psychologist we have developed lists and tasks for me as well. Sure, I can remember to take my medication and get groceries and turn on and off the stove and take the garbage out and shower and go to bed. But, do I want to? No, right now I don’t! My brain is such that, not unlike my friend’s brain-injured clients, I am having problems completing daily tasks.

I have little motivation at times to continue but somewhere inside of me there’s a voice that says, “Keep going.” I know I have to wake up in the morning. I know I have to take my antidepressant medication. I know I have to shower and go to work. I also know that while there is breath being exhaled from my mouth there is a purpose to living. I don’t feel it, but I know it.

And right now, this is the time for lists. I don’t feel adult-like. I feel often like I’m failing. But right now, while my brain and emotions are fragile, this is the time for basic lists to help me function and survive. I am not strong enough right now to reach for the stars. I don’t know why I can’t do and be all the things I think I should be but now is not the time to discriminate and judge. Now is the time for doing, doing one thing at a time, one step at a time so that I can manage my day-to-day life.

We all need to self-manage. “Normal” brain or injured brain makes no difference. Whatever level we’re at is the level at which we need to manage and for however long it takes.

The only requirement is to just keep going, without judgement or criticism, but with kindness and compassion for ourselves and others.

This is where I’m at and I will work this day to the best of my ability, Post-It notes and all!

What’s Your Flavor?

My husband’s favorite ice cream is vanilla.

As luck would have it, that’s the very flavor that I have. I willingly serve it and it makes me happy to give it away. It brings me joy to see my husband experience such pleasure.

It’s no wonder he thinks there is nothing wrong with our marriage. He’s got a belly full of creamy vanilla ice cream.

On the flip side, my favorite is strawberry. The problem is that my husband only has chocolate and not only is that the only flavor he stocks, he is unwilling to stock anything else. It doesn’t matter that I want strawberry; he either can’t, or won’t, stock it. Either way, I’m left craving strawberry ice cream.

Don’t get me wrong, he serves a beautiful chocolate ice cream and sometimes it really hits the spot and I am satisfied. But, at the core of my being, I crave strawberry ice cream. The desire always returns and often with a fierce intensity.

I am sad.

It seems a little more understandable that he feels bad. He continues to offer the best he’s got but I keep asking for something different.

I’m starting to get a sense that in continuing to ask for something that someone can’t provide, I’m hurting us both.

He can never please me. And I can never be fully pleased.

I wish I could be happy with chocolate ice cream. I really do. I wish I didn’t want something different. But, the truth is I do and I can no longer ignore it.

I can no longer ignore the true essence that flows through me.

It’s neither right nor wrong. It just is.

Continuously returning to the chocolate ice cream vendor is never going to net me strawberry ice cream. This I now know.

 

The Faith of the Faulty Gatekeeper

The undercurrent is strong.

These thoughts, they trickle in quietly through the flood gates. Once enough waters have seeped by, the current rages forcefully. I’m drowning before I’ve realized what’s happened.

I’m learning though, albeit slowly, to be a better gatekeeper. I’m in training.

I couldn’t stop it last night but in the midst of being forced down by the floods, I shone light on the darkness and remained calm.

You may not think so, but it’s progress to be able to look at your reflection in the water of a toilet basin that is half-filled with your own vomit and tell yourself that you’re loved and worthy. With every heave, I reminded myself that I am filled with the holy spirit.

Indeed, the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.

I tell you, I’m not done asking. I am earnestly seeking. And the door will be opened.

I know not when, but I know it will.