Monday, April 26, 2010
During this morning's meditation, I felt deep gratitude for the gift of freedom in my life. Freedom is a state of mind. At the tender age of 5 years old, freedom and the ability to trust my body was shaken to the core as I dropped to the ground from paralytic polio. Although I was paralyzed, I had a vision of a healing Being -- I was free to step into a well bucket and was reeled up to meet this Being. I knew that no matter the life challenge, I was being protected, guarded and guided. Victor Frankl, author of Man's Search for Meaning talks about how, when he was in the concentration camp during World War II, although all of his freedoms were stripped away, he always had the freedom to choose how he was going to perceive his situation.
When I worked as a social worker at the VA, I was blessed to meet the courageous men and women who served our country. The POW's and I had a special connection. Although I was not captured during the war, I did have to surrender my physical freedom many times during my younger years. As my regular readers know, my father fell into alcoholism when I was 8 years old - just 3 years after contracting polio. He turned to me in his drunken hours for physical comfort and sexually abused me; and then would turn to beating me. During the summer of 1971, I was held captive by my father's drunken rages. My parents were separated and he moved in with my grandparents in the Bronx. We never knew when he would show up at our door step threatening to kill us. My mother, God rest her soul was so numb from prescription pain killers that she did not have the where with all to protect us. He ended up taking his own life on August 1, 1971. He could not find a way to be free and be in his physical body; his mind was filled with torment.
Although I was physically liberated on the day I learned of his death, it took years for me to find emotional freedom and with it peace and healing. But here I sit today with the gift of a new day. A blank page on which I get to write the script of my life. My thoughts this morning were initially focused on anticipating problems -- why hadn't my book order arrived? did my publisher make the corrections? am I really experiencing financial freedom or is disaster looming around the corner? (I had to declare bankruptcy after my father's death on behalf of my parents - it was a mess but God is always in the messes) am I physically whole or am I going to experience deterioration with symptoms of post polio syndrome? And then the word freedom floated into my heart and I realized I have the freedom to choose my beliefs.I hugged the beautiful child within who is trying to protect me by being prepared for the worst at all times. I told her I loved her and I told her together we would turn to God for Love, Light and Truth.
I choose to believe that past experiences are not the truth of my life. I choose to believe that I am healthy and whole and that I can manage the symptoms of post polio syndrome. I choose to believe that I am enough and I always have enough (to quote Terry Cole Whittaker in Follow Your Bliss). I choose to believe that, to quote Albert Einstein, the Universe is indeed a most wonderfully friendly place despite or maybe because of everything that has happened before. I choose to cry tears of joy and gratitude and relief that I am free - free to choose happiness, free to choose what is true for my life's path; I choose to love me and to quote Terry Cole Whittaker again, what anyone else thinks of me is none of my business. I am free to be courageous to live my path, fulfill my destiny and live my life with passion and purpose feeling overwhelming gratitude that I am free! I choose to believe that with God all things are possible.
I express freedom in the gift of poetry I discovered after being diagnosed with post polio syndrome. Although my body was shut down, my Spirit flew free and wrote poems of gratitude, healing, joy and love. Come with me on my healing journey through my books of inspirational poetry: "New World Greetings:Inspirational Poetry and Musings for a New World" and "Set Sail for a New World:Healing a Life Through the Gift of Poetry". 20% of book proceeds are donated to Hope Charitable Trust
and The Salk Institute for Biological Studies.
Why settle for a greeting card that comes close to what you want to say. At New World Greeting Cards, we create original poetry which starts with YOU!
What kind of a day will you create today? I hope it is one overflowing with freedom, joy, happiness and peace and that you go forth and be the change you want to see in the world.
Thank you for reading.