chop wood carry water

deja brew

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anyone who reads my blog with a bit of regularity knows that i have a thing for music and an even more intense thing for cover versions. live lounge from the bbc has become one of my go-to’s with record to cover versions. it’s quite the thing for recording artists to visit the live lounge at the bbc and record their own cover versions of songs they consider favorite. it’s like having a few swedish thumbprint cookies and a cappucino to me- delicious. (spinning latte borrowed from #goodcoffee )music

enjoy….

 

 

s

 

 

progress… not perfection

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The present moment contains past and future. The secret of transformation, is in the way we handle this very moment. — Thich Nhat Hanh – Understanding Our Mind
The present moment
contains past and future.
The secret of transformation,
is in the way we handle this very moment.
— Thich Nhat Hanh – Understanding Our Mind

 

we only see as deeply as we look. even then, we have no guarantee that we will really see.

i certainly realize how easily it is to look past things that cause me discomfort because the fear of the unknown beneath that is more powerful. even when life seems so painful the way it is, there are many times i would rather endure than risk not knowing what’s next.

faith definitely helps with this, but it doesn’t erase it. lately i have been referring to the white lies i tell myself and other as “flash cards” that i have preprinted and hold up as answers sometimes when having a conversation about the truth i don’t feel ready to face.

a big part of the work in front of me is to become aware when i am using flash cards instead of being authentic. sounds easy i know, but lemme tell you it ain’t at all. i am an accomplished storyteller and faker.

“It Takes A Lot To Know A Man”

It takes a lot to know a man
It takes a lot to understand
The warrior, the sage
The little boy enraged

It takes a lot to know a woman
A lot to understand what’s humming
The honeybee, the sting
The little girl with wings

It takes a lot to give, to ask for help
To be yourself, to know and love what you live with
It takes a lot to breathe, to touch, to feel
The slow reveal of what another body needs

It takes a lot to know a man
A lot to know, to understand
The father and the son
The hunter and the gun

It takes a lot know a woman
A lot to comprehend what’s coming
The mother and the child
The muse and the beguiled

It takes a lot to give, to ask for help
To be yourself, to know and love what you live with
It takes a lot to breathe, to touch, to feel
The slow reveal of what another body needs

It takes a lot to give, to ask for help
To be yourself, to know and love what you live with
It takes a lot to breathe, to touch, to feel
The slow reveal of what another body needs

It takes a lot to live, to ask for help
To be yourself, to know and love what you live with
It takes a lot to breathe, to touch, to feel
The slow reveal of what another body needs

What are you so afraid to lose?
What is it you’re thinking that will happen if you do?
What are you so afraid to lose?
(You wrote me to tell me you’re nervous and you’re sorry)
What is it you’re thinking that will happen if you do?
(Crying like a baby saying “this thing is killing me”)
What are you so afraid to lose?
(You wrote me to tell me you’re nervous and you’re sorry)
What is it you’re thinking that will happen if you do?
(Crying like a baby saying “this thing is killing me”)
You wrote me to tell me you’re nervous and you’re sorry
Crying like a baby saying “this thing is killing me”

feeling good

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“We are all faced with a series of great opportunities brilliantly disguised as impossible situations.” ~Charles R. Swindoll
“We are all faced with a series of great opportunities brilliantly disguised as impossible situations.” ~Charles R. Swindoll

Every bad experience, painful relationship, and compromise you’ve ever made in good conscience will somehow transform into a beautiful inner reservoir of spiritual gifts and blessings.

Life wants you to take notice of three things when you’re going through a difficult time that may seem eternal:

Trust life. There’s a higher purpose behind every seemingly impossible and difficult phase. You’ve just got to hang in there and know that it’s for the best.

Change. If you find yourself feeling bad a lot more often than not, take time out to reflect on whether or not you’re happy deep down with what you’re doing.

Believe. Believe in yourself, even if the world around you doesn’t. If you don’t, who will?

Hold onto what you believe in. You’re meant to emerge as a beautiful butterfly from your chrysalis. Always remember that, with a smile, and give yourself a chance to delight and revel in the mysterious workings of the universe.

it’s a new dawn

it’s a new day

and i’m feeling good.

this long term survivor honors world aids day

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“When another person makes you suffer, it is because he suffers deeply within himself, and his suffering is spilling over. He does not need punishment, he needs help.” ~Thich Nat Hahn
“When another person makes you suffer, it is because he suffers deeply within himself, and his suffering is spilling over. He does not need punishment, he needs help.” ~Thich Nat Hahn

AIDS SURVIVOR SYNDROME (ASS)

What is AIDS Survivor Syndrome (ASS)?

What is AIDS Survivor Syndrome (ASS)? reposted from letskickass.org

Is what happens after the AIDS tsunami recedes. When the survivors of the crisis have had time to evaluate the loss, grief and fear of the tragedy that unfolded. It describes where we are now 30+ years into the AIDS epidemic. Life is going on but some of us are still are still traumatized.

ASS is a perfectly natural response to surviving a life-threatening trauma. In the case of the AIDS epidemic it was a crisis that lasted 20 years. It exists on a spectrum from very mild to severe.

AIDS Survivor Syndrome manifests in aimlessness, depression, broken relationships, substance abuse, high-risk behavior and, in its most extreme results in suicide.

The signs include: depression; personality changes; flashes of anger; survivor guilt; anxiety; emotional numbness; insomnia; social withdrawal and isolation; hopelessness; substance abuse; sexual risk-taking; and lack of future orientation. It includes elements of post-traumatic stress (PTS).

Any combination of those and other signs related to surviving when so many loved ones and community members died. It often takes years to manifest after life around the survivors has returned to normal for the people around them.

 

READ WHAT Al Jazeera America says about AIDS Survivor Syndrome:http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2014/2/21/living-with-aidssurvivorssyndrome.html

But even its proponents admit that it may take some time to convince doctors that ASS is real and open up its sufferers for special treatment. For most of the people in the medical and health care policy communities, “the furthest thing in their mind is ASS,” Anderson said. “We want to say to doctors and health care professionals, if you have someone living with HIV for this many years, you need to understand that these symptoms together add up to a kind of PTSD.”

“Survivor syndrome” was coined by Dr. William G. Niederland to describe what the survivors of the death camps were going through 16 years after the holocaust ended. We are at that point in the history of HIV.

When huge swaths of your family of choice and community die and you survive, and with 50,000 or more people in the US living with HIV, there are wildly varying responses to living after decades of preparing to die.

The evidence of ASS is anecdotal but overwhelming. Health care professionals and therapists often focus on individual symptoms and not the totality of them nor the cause. So it under diagnosed and tragically under treated. It wreaks havoc on survivors and their loved ones and no one is looking for it.

All the optimistic talk about an “AIDS-Free Generation” and “Getting To Zero” sounds exclusionary to long-term HIV/AIDS survivors. If AIDS disappeared tomorrow the psychosocial aspects would remain in tens of thousands of people who lived through the 1980s and 1990s. Many survivors think the end of AIDS will happen after we’re dead. And this is a group whom are already ignored feel ostracized feel even more discounted, like our losses and grief and terror meant nothing. Like the world would rather move on.

One of Let’s Kick ASS’ goals is to research long-term survivors and measure resilience and the effects of ASS. — By Tez Anderson

Here is a video about ASS:

<p><a href=”http://vimeo.com/97766152″>Aids Long Term Survivors</a> from <a href=”http://vimeo.com/user2331972″>Kelly Dessoye</a> on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

renewed sense of purpose

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Your work is to discover your world  and then with all your heart give yourself to it. Buddha
Your work is to discover your world
and then with all your heart give yourself to it.
Buddha


The Third Step Prayer

God, I offer myself to Thee-
To build with me
and to do with me as Thou wilt.
Relieve me of the bondage of self,
that I may better do Thy will.
Take away my difficulties,
that victory over them may bear witness
to those I would help of Thy Power,
Thy Love, and Thy Way of life.
May I do Thy will always!

this has been a stand-out year. i have taken 2 months away from regular work and experimented with renewed soul searching, setting boundaries, letting go, saying no, trusting my intuition, practicing living as a human being not a human doing, journaling, and listening.

at the very least this has been a hella ride. i have no real idea where the journey goes, but have made a renewed commitment to finding value in the experience.

for this i am eternally grateful.

updated anthem

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Just as despair can come to one only from other human beings, hope, too, can be given to one only by other human beings.  – Elie Weisel
Just as despair can come to one only from other human beings, hope, too, can be given to one only by other human beings.
– Elie Weisel

“I Walk The Line”

I keep a close watch on this heart of mine
I keep my eyes wide open all the time
I keep the ends out for the tie that binds
Because you’re mine, I walk the lineI find it very, very easy to be true
I find myself alone when each day is through
Yes, I’ll admit that I’m a fool for you
Because you’re mine, I walk the line

As sure as night is dark and day is light
I keep you on my mind both day and night
And happiness I’ve known proves that it’s right
Because you’re mine, I walk the line

You’ve got a way to keep me on your side
You give me cause for love that I can’t hide
For you I know I’d even try to turn the tide
Because you’re mine, I walk the line

I keep a close watch on this heart of mine
I keep my eyes wide open all the time
I keep the ends out for the tie that binds
Because you’re mine, I walk the line… johnny cash

 

sticktoitiveness

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 “When you come to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on.” ~Franklin D. Roosevelt
“When you come to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on.” ~Franklin D. Roosevelt

a sene of unknowing has swept over my brain just as the fog does over san francisco bay, chilling the entire city and obstructing the warmth of the sun. this current situation certainly does not come near the gift of desperation that got me into recovery, but it completely shields the sunlight of spirit as it reminds me that i am not the captian on this ship but merely a passenger. i so want to hate that or at least my ego does. gotta just keep going and run those red lights. at least for today.