Posts Tagged With: hospital gift shop

Day 2554: Mood swings

Yesterday was November 22, a day when I’ve often had mood swings.  Why? Because fifty-six years ago on that date, President John F. Kennedy was assassinated and I had my first heart surgery to get my first cardiac pacemaker.

After I swung myself out of bed, I put on my “I have mood swings” socks, hoping that my mood swings that day would be manageable.

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Thankfully, my mood swings yesterday were not remarkable. For example, when I noticed that Michael had removed stuff from two kitchen cabinets during the night, I thought, “That can’t be good.”

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But my mood didn’t swing dramatically.

When I noticed a truck that reminded me of death on my way into work …

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…. my mood didn’t swing that much.

Here are more things that caused negligible mood swings yesterday:

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Did any of those photos swing your mood in any way?

Here‘s The Mood Swings Orchestra, an all-woman big band located in the Boston area:

I expect my mood will swing up when I read your comments about this “Mood Swings” post.  Thanks to all, including YOU.

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Categories: anniversary, group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 21 Comments

Day 2544: Flow

Two days ago, I drew this flow chart on my office white board for somebody who was trying to decide what action to take in a very difficult family situation.

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Then, in a flow of  synchronicity, somebody who used to participate in my Coping and Healing groups sent me this flowchart in an email:

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I love the way that flow chart keeps flowing into the same conclusion.

Are you ready for the flow of lots of other photos?

 

Last night, my dear friend Jeanette flowed into town from Philadelphia and shared our dinner, flowing conversations, photos of a Nailed It! cake and her trick-or-treating dog Gidget, and also this:

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It looks like that kitty has some opinions.  Go with the flow and don’t worry about it!

Here‘s a review of the book Flow by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi:

 

Here’s “Flow” by Shawn James:

 

I look forward to the flow of comments below, because

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Are you ready for the flow of gratitude for all who help me create these daily posts, including YOU?

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Categories: friendship, group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 23 Comments

Day 2532: It’s that time of the year

It’s that time of the year for

  • dressing up,
  • holidays,
  • traditions,
  • changes,
  • anniversaries,
  • anxiety,
  • comfort food,
  • selfies,
  • memories,
  • celebrations,
  • communication,
  • complications,
  • simplicity,
  • faith,
  • love,
  • forgiveness,
  • self-care,
  • accepting all your feelings,
  • balancing your needs with other people’s needs, and
  • sharing photos.

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It’s also that time of year for cats (at least around here) and music (here , here, and here on YouTube):

It’s always that time of the year for gratitude, so thanks to all who help me create timely posts, including YOU.

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Categories: group therapy, Halloween, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 21 Comments

Day 2519: What we’re holding

Yesterday, one of my friends who works where I park my car on weekdays took my ukulele and posed while holding it, like so:

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That’s the topic of my next blog post, I thought — What we’re holding.  So I held my iPhone while I took photos of what others were holding, throughout the day.

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All day, I was holding  sadness and concern for a beloved group therapist and teacher with a serious illness.  What I didn’t know, while I was holding that card, was that she had already passed away.

What we’re holding — even if we don’t show it — includes loss, love, pain, and so much more.

Whatever you’re holding now,  dear reader, feel free to share it in a comment below.

As always, I’m holding so much gratitude for you.

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Categories: group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , | 20 Comments

Day 2494: Sometimes life sucks

Sometimes life sucks, like when you lose an old friend to a terrible brain cancer that has killed another friend of yours.

Sometimes you see a card that perfectly captures your experience.

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Sometimes you listen to the same damn song over and over again to comfort yourself, like when you’re driving to say goodbye to an old friend.

 

Hajanga

by Jacob Collier

Everybody, near and far
Come together as you are
To the ocean, to the sky
Sing that cosmic lullaby
Sing the hajanga

Sing your pleasure sing your pain
Like you’ll never sing again
Let it echo, loud and clear
Across the ancient stratosphere
Even when the sun refuse to shine
There’s a song of love that never dies

Even when the good days pass you by
Lift your voices to the sky singin’
La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la
La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la…

As the words go round and round
Let the tears roll down and down
Sing the way you wish to be
Let that singing set you free

Even when those dark clouds bring you down
There’s a spark of joy that can be found
Even when things break and fall apart
Lift your hands up from your heart, singing
La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la
La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la…

Said every morning
Every night
Through the darkness
To the light
Like a beacon
Shining bright
Sing the hajanga you’ll be alright

From the winter
Comes the spring
It don’t matter
What life will bring
You can do most anything
So give your hajanga
A song to sing

So tell your mama
Tell your pa
Sing it near and sing it far
Be exactly the way you are
See the hajanga
It’s your guiding star

To every woman
To every man
In every nation
In every land
I said please you’ve gotta understand
Now sing the hajanga
And take my hand, sing it!

Then one day your life is through
Nothing more that you can do
So give away the things you know
And tell your friends you love them so
Tell them hajanga

I let the tears roll down and down, yesterday, as I told Tony‘s friends and family that I loved him so.

Sometimes life sucks and we CAN do a damn thing about it, like telling people we love them so.

Here are all my other damn photos from yesterday:

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Sometimes life sucks and we can feel and express gratitude for what we still have, like this blog and YOU.

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Categories: in memoriam, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments

Day 2439: What words stand out for you?

After the Democrat debate last night — which included a lot of words, presidential candidates, and interruptions — I’m wondering what words stand out for you?

What words stand out for you in my photos from yesterday?

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poster

My son’s friend Leo (who wrote some stand-out words in this blog post) thinks I’ll stand out if my Fringe poster includes words about my credentials.  I’m still not sure whether I’ll include those words.

When I search YouTube for “What words stand out for you?” this comes up first

… which reminds me of the misheard words in my son’s video:

These words stand out for me from comedian Peter Kay’s Wikipedia page:

his first semi-professional stand-up appearances were at the 1998 Edinburgh Fringe Festival, where he received a prestigious Perrier Award nomination.

Words that stand out for me from my readers’ comments, over the years, tell me that certain wordless pictures stand out, like this one:

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What words stand out for me, as I finish this post?  As usual, these words:

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Categories: group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 19 Comments

Day 2431: Community

My dear blogging community,

After almost seven years of blogging daily about the healing power of community, I discover, here and now, that I have never, ever titled a post “Community” before.

COMMUNITY noun, often attributive
com·​mu·​ni·​ty | \ kə-ˈmyü-nə-tē \
plural communities
Definition of community
1 : a unified body of individuals: such as
a : the people with common interests living in a particular area
broadly : the area itself
the problems of a large community
b : a group of people with a common characteristic or interest living together within a larger society
a community of retired persons
a monastic community
c : a body of persons of common and especially professional interests scattered through a larger society
the academic community
the scientific community
d : a body of persons or nations having a common history or common social, economic, and political interests
the international community
e : a group linked by a common policy
f : an interacting population of various kinds of individuals (such as species) in a common location
g : STATE, COMMONWEALTH
2a : a social state or condition
The school encourages a sense of community in its students.
b : joint ownership or participation
community of goods
c : common character : LIKENESS
community of interests
d : social activity : FELLOWSHIP
3 : society at large
the interests of the community

If you’re looking for a definition of “community” by Merriam-Webster,  that’s it.

When I look at news stories from the world community, I do not find a focus on community, Instead, I see divisiveness, “other”-ing, and antonyms of community like inequality, conflict, polarity, incompatibility, incongruence, disproportion, imbalance, disagreement, discrepancy, disparity, dissimilarity, unlikeness, forlornness, and loneliness.

Do you see community in my photos from yesterday ?

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Don Henley, who used to be in a community of Eagles, has created several songs about community, including this one

… and this one.

It’s difficult to find Don Henley songs in the community of YouTube, but here’s a slower version of “The Boys of Summer.”

I look forward to hearing from my community of readers.

No matter what community  I’m in, I’m always looking for expressions of gratitude.  Thanks to the community of people who helped me create this post and — of course! — thanks to YOU.

 

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Categories: definition, group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

Day 2410: Tell me what you see.

Tell me if you see that three days ago I published a post titled “Tell Me About It” (which is the first time I’ve used “Tell me …” in a blog post title).  Tell me what you see in that.

Tell me what you see in my photos from yesterday (presented so you can see them chronologically).

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Tell me what you see in this Beatles song:

 

Tell me what you see in this cover of “Tell Me What You See.”

Every day, my G.O.A.L …

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… is to Get Out And Look, because there’s so much to see!

Tell me if you see gratitude here to all who help me create these posts and — of course! — to YOU.

 

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments

Day 2382: The Pest Reliever

Sometimes, the first photo I take affects how I see things for the rest of the day, as well as the contents of my next blog.

Here’s the first photo I took yesterday:

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It’s a relief to share that I can see myself as a kind of pest reliever — relieving  what pesters my patients and also myself. Those pests include:

  • shame,
  • worry,
  • stress,
  • anxiety,
  • depression,
  • perfectionism,
  • traumatic memories, and
  • harsh judgments (like the inner critic).

Pest relievers can include:

  • acceptance,
  • appreciation,
  • forgiveness,
  • humor,
  • welcoming all feelings,
  • self-expression,
  • self-care,
  • care for others,
  • compassion,
  • celebrating,
  • being in the moment,
  • nature, and
  • community.

Let’s see if there are any pest relievers in my other photos from yesterday (presented as taken chronologically, so I don’t pester myself about any “right or wrong” order):

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Michael’s cooking is definitely a pest reliever.   I sometimes pester Michael for his cooking secrets to share here: there’s no pesto on that salmon, but rather a delicious lime, mint, and fresh peach sauce.

Music can be another pest reliever, so here’s “Voodoo Mambo” from The Pest, starring John Leguizamo.

 

Now I’m going to be a pest and ask for comments, below.

As always, a great pest reliever is gratitude, so thanks to all who helped me create this pest-reliever post and thanks to you — of course! — for visiting.

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Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, therapy | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments

Day 2379: Growing pains

Sometimes, when I’m trying to make sense of what’s happening with my country, I attribute it to growing pains.

Here’s a definition of growing pains:

grow·ing pains
/ˈɡrōiNG ˌpānz/
noun
neuralgic pains which occur in the limbs of some young children.
the difficulties experienced in the early stages of an enterprise.
“the growing pains of a young republic”

Earlier this week, Vivian (who continues to grow since co-facilitating Coping and Healing groups with me over a year ago), sent me this in a text message:

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Vivian (who is never a pain) also sent me this:

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Obviously, Frances Cannon has undergone some growing pains and we can all benefit from those.

Yesterday, after a day filled with some painful growth, I left a voicemail message for a lovely co-worker — who is experiencing some growing pains at work — suggesting that she take a break from her pain and anxiety about potentially doing the wrong thing,  by welcoming it.  While that may seem painfully counter-intuitive, that advice comes from my own experience.  In the 1990s, when I was experiencing growing pains and almost debilitating anxiety at my first social work internship, one morning I looked at myself in the mirror and said, “Ann!  Today you are going to celebrate making mistakes and enjoy people getting angry at you.” That self-intervention helped me tolerate the growing pains of becoming a social worker, working within a hospital system, and learning to be a group therapist.

Let’s see if there’s any evidence of growing pains in today’s pictures, shall we?

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It’s sometimes a pain for me to decide what music to include in these posts,  because there are so many choices! This image …

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… reminded me of the Pharrell Williams lyrics “Clap along if you feel like a room without a roof” so let’s do this:

Also, in honor of the Who being named world’s loudest  rock band in 1976 …

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… let’s do this, from an April 1, 1976 Who Concert in Boston (my hometown, where I’ve experienced lots of growing pains).

 

I’m looking forward to the comments section, below, growing with your comments.

 

Gratitude always helps with the pain of growing, so thanks to all who helped me create this “growing pains” post and — of course! — to YOU.

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Categories: group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 18 Comments

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