Posts Tagged With: John F. Kennedy

Day 2527: Looking forward

“Looking forward” is something people often write and say about the future.  Today, I’m looking forward to

While looking forward to events in the future can help one feel hope, it can also trigger worry and fears about that future, like “Is this too much?”  “Will all these activities next week interfere in my self care?” “Will the absence of the late Walter Becker get in the way of my really enjoying the Steely Dan concert?” “What’s the weather going to be like?” “Am I ready for November?”  and “Where the hell am I going to park?”

The cure for future-oriented fears is refocusing on the present moment. And in this moment, I have several new photos to share with you.

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To make this my day, my way, I’d like to revisit and clarify one difficult-to-read photo above:

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History is a relentless master. It has no present, only the past rushing into the future. To try to hold fast is to be swept aside.

John Fitzgerald Kennedy

I’m looking forward to thoughtful and articulate future Presidents of the United States of America.

Finding this on YouTube is helping me look forward, even more, to the Steely Day concert on Friday:

I’m looking forward to knowing what you’re looking forward to. In other words, I’m looking forward to reading any comment you might leave, below.

I wonder if anybody is looking forward to my thanking everybody for all you do for me, every day, here at this blog.

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Categories: gratitude, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 32 Comments

Day 326: Helpful reminders, on November 22, 2013

I have another blog, besides this one, called Ann’s Helpful Hints (re: Letting go of Judgment).  It only has two posts: a list of cognitive distortions and a list of antidotes for unhelpful thoughts.

Here’s one of the antidotes:

Use Helpful Reminders.  Use helpful phrases to challenge habitual distortions. For example, for mind-reading or fortune telling, remind yourself “I’m not psychic.” Make a list of other phrases that help you, such as “I am doing the best I can,” “One step at a time,” etc. Consider sticking these reminders where you can see them.

In therapy groups, I often put up a list of helpful phrases.  The group members and I add to it, as we choose. In other words, the list is a work in progress (like everyone who comes to the groups).

I can remember a few of the phrases on that list, right now:

You’re exactly where you’re supposed to be.

The pain of the loss is directly related to the importance of the connection.

Less is more.

That last one was easy for me to remember, because somebody suggested it last night.

Here’s why I’m writing about this topic, today.

I want to include, in this post, some  helpful reminders that people have written to me, lately.

If you wish to “connect” with me, please do.

While you are observing the anniversary of your 1st [pacemaker] implant, is it possible to view it as a celebration ( not painful) of life…YOUR life…& your continued presence in my life and the life of your other readers & friends & family. 

Take heart, Ann.

Thanks to all, for every helpful reminder, phrase, or thought. Quoted or not. Expressed or unexpressed.

Here’s one more phrase, before I end.

Rest in peace.

Rest in peace, John Kennedy.

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Rest in peace, all those I love, who have passed on before me.

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I want to use that phrase for the living, now.

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Here’s my wish, for all my “readers & friends & family.” (And for me, too.)

May we all rest, in peace, while still here on this earth.

Not perfectly. Not all the time. But as best we can.

Thanks so much, for reading today.


** Left to right: my father, my mother, Nell Zaitchik, Rabbi Samuel Zaitchik

***  fromanxietytolove.com

Categories: personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 25 Comments

Day 323: Grieving old losses

After an initial therapy session, I need to write a treatment formulation. This includes  a brief description of the person seeking therapy  and my best guess at what might help.

When I write a formulation, I tend to include certain therapeutic themes.

One of them is this:

Grieving old losses.

I do believe that most people have losses, from the past, that could be attended to, in a new way.

I know that I do.

I know that I still am grieving the loss of both my parents.  That is a work in progress.

I am especially aware of losses, where the grieving has barely begun.

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This week, as I prepare for the 50th anniversary of November 22, 1963, I am becoming aware of a loss I have not yet grieved.

The loss of President John F. Kennedy.

As I have blogged about, several times this year (and especially lately), I was 10 years old when President Kennedy was killed.

However, I wasn’t awake, during that time.  I was undergoing my first heart surgery, for the implantation of my first cardiac pacemaker.

So I’ve always felt different, that way.  When people of my generation discuss where they were when JFK was killed, my story is …. weird, I guess.

This is the way I found out that President Kennedy was dead:

They had gotten me out of bed, days after my surgery, and somebody was taking me around in a wheelchair, down the corridor of the Children’s Hospital ward.  As we passed by each patient room, I saw the TVs, mounted up high,  on the wall.

On each TV, I saw the same image.  The same image, over and over again, as somebody wheeled me by.

A coffin.

I had never seen anything like that before, on TV.  And it was on every TV.

Days before, I had asked a question, twice, and received a world-shifting answer.  The question had been, “What’s that?” when I saw a large pacemaker, implanted under my skin.

When I saw the coffin, I MUST have been afraid to ask that same question.

I don’t remember the fear. But I do remember asking the question.

“What’s that?”

And that’s when I found out that my beloved president, John F. Kennedy, had been shot.

Killed.  Murdered.

By whom?

By a man named Lee Harvey Oswald.

I couldn’t take in that unfamiliar name, I’m sure.

Why did he kill the President?

Nobody knew. And he was dead, too. He had been killed, by another stranger.

How was all this possible?

HOW WAS ANY OF IT POSSIBLE?

I couldn’t answer that.  I was only 10.

I wonder if anybody, awake during that time, could answer that.

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This week, as Friday — the 50th anniversary of 11/22/63  — approaches, I have resolved to grieve old losses, as well as I can.

I am taking Friday off from work.  I have committed to be especially kind to myself, that day.

One way to be kind to myself is this: To remember that I am not alone in my grief.  Even though my experience of that loss was very different, I share the trauma of that loss with millions of people.

I am not alone.

Also, since I was 10, I’ve avoided details about what happened during that time.

I resolve to open up to the details, now.  And to turn away, if I choose.

And more importantly, I resolve to open up to the grief of that loss, of the president we loved.

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I think I’m ready for that, now.

Thanks to picsofwisdom.com (for the image of JFK), to those who are grieving losses everywhere, and to you — especially — for visiting today.

Categories: personal growth | Tags: , , , , | 14 Comments

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