Little Had I Known!

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The decisions we make, especially those that advance personal gratification without regard for others that are part of our lives, aren’t completely free of negativities. A belief that having the freedom to dictate our path is exclusively our right irrespective of how it might affect others, can be up for debate. How so? We are an extension of others. As multi-cellular beings, all of us are because a man and a woman procreate, and here we should consider this reality of the chain of life. Therefore, with this fact-based analysis, let’s return to my argument’s central theme: “In reality, we are not completely independent of others in all the decisions we make!” Also, those decisions can effects us, no matter our intentions. We can cause positive outcomes or negative ones, but there will be outcomes. They will be no perfect result because of the complexity of who we are as individuals operating collectively for the greater purpose of the whole. Therefore, whenever unlike minds weigh in, directly or indirectly, which they will, life’s processes continue no matter our decisions. And like chess pieces on a checkerboard, we take turns in that process to gain our objectives as life affords us those turns to hopefully make a difference. It’s up to us what those differences will be!

Now, I will delve into the relevance and validity of my perception that there isn’t complete freedom to decide the issues of life without a thought of others on its merit or lack thereof, without their dependency or being affected by it! It was 7:pm when placed in room 211A at the facility where my recovery process would begin. Hurricane Ivan was only hours away, and I had surgery thirty-six hours earlier. The atmosphere was filled with trepidation about the pending havoc Hurricane Ivan might rain down on us as it did elsewhere in its veracity.

Nevertheless, the EMT personnel got me into bed and soon disappeared. Two hours later, a man appeared at my bedside in scrubs, identifying himself as the charge nurse for the night. He gave me some pills and assured me they would help with the pain. I tried exchanging pleasantries and also shared my concerns about the approaching hurricane. It had already begun to rain, and the velocity of the winds force caused a swishing sound as its pearl-like droplets pounded the large windows across the room. It sounded like a preview of what was to come. Swallowing the pills, I voiced my concerns, feeling trapped at such a time. I couldn’t walk, and my right leg felt like a log. One that overtook my very being with electronic shocks and made my body scream in alarm. It felt like an angry force took up residence in my being; the coming days would be a meltdown, almost to a childlike state. Pain can make you yield, becoming a semblance of a period in time you had long forgotten.

I made eye contact with the other woman in the additional bed in the room. As I looked across the room, I noticed through the open blinds the thick foliage that outlined the courtyard. I first thought that being five feet away from a window during a hurricane wasn’t the safest place. It was obvious she was hurting. She acknowledged me with a brief “Hi,” and then went back to groaning. We should be quite a pair, I thought. The nurse soon returns to the room to give her her meds. I stopped him before he could leave; “So, have you ever been in a Hurricane?” Instead of answering my question, he responded, “I’ve always wanted to experience how it feels to be in a Hurricane since I was a boy!” Little had I known that night he had planned on fulfilling that boyhood fantasy. Decisions, decisions![..]

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There Is No Other Way Around This!

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It’s in the obscure and most vulnerable place in life; we get a front-row seat to observe and experience the true nature of people. Recently, as a patient dependent on the skilled care of others, I saw the unfiltered nature of people entrusted to care for the most vulnerable. As I observed and experienced the care rendered, let me be objective while being honest. My stay at the hospital was “A” plus. The doctors, nurses, and affiliating staff members were the best. However, due to the nature of my surgery, I needed continued rehabilitation, which had me sent to a Nursing Home/ Rehabilitation facility.

In those first days of observing the insensitivity, especially by the night staff, I thought they were ranch handlers who switched their line of employment in mid-stream. How could people be emotionally detached from what they were trained to do? It breaks my heart to be so blunt, but there is no other way around this! To see the insensitivity exhibited by those in charge of hands-on care is frightening. This approach isn’t something to state lightly, but like cancer of the soul, it will be our undoing. I am not naive; this goes beyond the staff. It’s a management issue that focuses on the bottom line, money! When profit takes precedence over our lives, we have entered a place of no return! I pray to God that I am wrong, and we are not at that place!

The system is broken, it seems like almost everyone is doing their own thing without fear of repercussions, and those in need of care suffer. These are the lives of people; it is sad! And the few good workers are underappreciated, overworked, and, being in the minority, have to be careful because they’ll be the first ones to be let go. How can one explain call lights going off for almost two hours and no one checking to see if the person has a medical emergency? And this is the norm? Something is wrong here! Very much so, it is wrong! Is this what we have become? Doesn’t this industry must be more than warehousing people?! I am sure this isn’t true of all Nursing Homes, but I’ve seen enough to sound the alarm. Several years ago, I worked in two smaller Nursing Homes here. What I’ve experienced recently further amplifies that this is commonplace and if we don’t address it, where is our humanity to humans?!

I will be sharing with you the night of the Hurricane there! It’s a night I will never forget. The Hurricane was one thing, but what the charge nurse did shook me to the core! You will not believe it; stay tuned, I am gaining back my strength, and I hope to work on it in the coming days. Have a safe and fulfilled weekend, and remember, the one in need might be you someday! Therefore, give a helping hand to those in need, and like seeds, they will germinate into something you can be proud of! Peace!

Thank You!

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Thanks to all of you who visited here in my absence. My surgery was successful, and I am still on the mend. I should have done this years ago but thank God it’s finally over for now; as we know, life has a way of throwing the unpredictable at us when we least expect it. Thank you again for being a part of my journey, and although I don’t know you personally, it would be safe to say we share some commonalities through the prism of our outlook on life. And I am grateful for your support. I pray your path has God’s best and your reality honors you as a gift to life, which you are!  

Facing our greatest of fears, which we all have a level of anxiety, is where we usually gain our greatest strength. These recent weeks have been one that will go down into captions of my life as one of coming into the fullness of my God-given purpose. I cannot recall ever being so completely dependent on others, even for my basic daily needs. It was humbling. I completely depended on others for the first seven days after my surgery; there is nothing special or unique about this because millions across the globe live this reality daily. However, when you are in that place of dependency—it takes on a different meaning. I was blessed to have some of Florida’s best healthcare providers. There were a few bad ones in the mix, but they didn’t take away from the generally good care given to others like me. Thanks to all the healthCare personnel who took care of me, the food was equally good at the hospital. I will share the day of hurricane Ivan with you in the coming days! I am still recovering mentally from that night.

Thanks for stopping by. I will be blogging weekly; I must give myself time to heal. Thanks for your continued support.

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To Yourself Be True!

Marjorie Delores

The philosopher Socrates from centuries ago encouraged us to “know ourselves.” Examine and understand who we are—and whoever does not know themself does not know anything,” he stated. While William Shakespeare’s play Hamlet reminded us, “Be true to yourself.” Several Bible scriptures also deal with the subject matter of knowing oneself. I chose to highlight Psalm 139: 14 KJV, which stated: “I will praise thee: for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvelous are thy works: and that my soul knows right well.” In this one verse, there is so much to garner from it. There have been ongoing efforts to self-actualize and know who we are since infancy. During the process, we make mistakes, learn and grow, and with an ever-present force influencing or steering us on a path, we aspire to reach our life’s purpose.

However, sometimes, other forces are set up to ensure our failure. This is why it is paramount that one must know oneself and know one’s core values, body, dreams, and likes and dislikes. Within this framework, we can cultivate the person we want to be and establish meaningful relationships with those who are like-minded. However, getting to this plateau sometimes isn’t an easy feat because of the structural settings we are a part of since birth; and If those settings are fractured or aren’t reflective of those core values we hold dear, then what? Denying oneself to please others doesn’t line up with the truth. The truth of who we are. So, at this juncture, hard choices have to be made that line up with reality, which begins with knowing yourself and being true to yourself. Sometimes, to stay true to yourself means shutting out destructive voices. At the end of the day, when you look in the mirror, who is looking back at you takes priority. We all are the product of our realities; however, in this vast expansion with innumerable opportunities and possibilities afforded us by our maker, we have the final call on what path we travel in life. Sometimes, getting to that place or station means traveling alone. Initially, it might seem daunting, but what’s the point of being surrounded by dreams crushers or those who are miserable with life and have rendered nothing but unhappiness? There comes a time that one has to be true to oneself and, by so doing, experience your best self. And maybe at that time and place can look back and pull up those perceived to be blinded to truth into seeing that life was meant to live in peace, contentment, and in the beauty it gives. Peace!

This is where I will be taking a long pause. To my extended family and friends, you won’t be hearing from me for a while. For those of you who have followed me these months, as a free spirit, I always come from a place where I’m comfortable. I am no trendsetter or follower, just a voice itching to be heard, which you’ve given me an ear over these many months. Thanks for the support, and I’ll be missing you and thinking of you in my absence; thank you for letting me believe this Island woman can be part of a broader conversation. Take care and stay safe until we meet here again. Here, from me to you; let it never be said I’ve never offered you flowers. God Bless you and your family!

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The Power Of Words!

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Lately, regularly, I enjoy reading poems by poets that have touched my life through the potency of their work, and Ms. Lyttle is one of those people. Earlier on a re-read of her anthology, the poem “This Thing Called Words” spoke to me the loudest about the power we have. “Purpose Within Every Promise,” the book from which I took this poem, reaches you wherever you are in its delivery. Her poetry speaks to its reader in a manner that isn’t simply reflective but awe-inspiring. Each line of this poem, “This Thing Called Words,” calls out to me in a way that makes me want to be more introspective and become deliberate assuring positive communications within my exchange. The art of communication can be verbal, one’s body language, or subliminal cues expressing how we feel; we always communicate even when we are silent. These cues give messages that set the tone for life’s outcomes, and Ms. Lyttle’s “This Thing Called Words” reminds us that our words are consequential, and their after-effects can set lives ablaze or create a harmony that empowers a nation. Peace!

This Thing Called Words

Words are like paint that stains the soul

Layer by layer, they create strongholds

Festered by Time, creating molds

Manifested in behaviors too strong to control

Building bridges, fences, and walls

Creating cities, both great and small

A city without light! That is subject to fall.

This thing called “words” is the creator of them all.

Through grace and truth, you’ll see the light

His foundation of love will be your delight

With words that heal, he will peel your soul

With gentle kisses that will make you whole

Who’ll come to know you’re his delight

Someone he caresses day and night

Your silent tears he’ll wipe away

The hidden scars of yesterday

Just trust in him, and he’ll heal your soul

And make your foundation genuinely whole.

By

Sophia Lyttle

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The Power of Positive Thinking!

Once again, I’m reminded of the power of positive thinking and how the universe responds in kind. Well, it has been proven again in the past twenty-four hours. Lately, there are days when I tend to be very optimistic about a positive change to some harsh realities; then, on a keener observation, that began to change. It’s like God; only you can change this; it looks hopeless. But, then, on reading the Bible, truth rings through that one cannot have faith and embrace doubt or fear. These cannot mix, and one is the absence of the other! So, I returned to that place of trust, and wow, the evidence of faith burst out all around me. Yesterday, my dear friends Sandra, Iris and I went to lunch. We have been doing this at intervals for years now. We enjoy each other’s company, so it’s always a good time. We always pay for our meals individually because, as retirees, money doesn’t come to us as it once did. Yesterday, Sandra picked up the tap for my lunch, which wasn’t expected of her. We had a great time together.

I saw her act of kindness as God speaking out loud that He is about to change things. Today, shopping at a large neighborhood department store chain, again, I’m reminded. On approaching the checkout line, there were only two people ahead, and the woman immediately ahead of me turned to look at me with concern upon my approach. Due to a pending knee replacement surgery, I am forced to use a motorized shopping cart. She may have thought I would bump into her with the shopping cart and cause her harm. Smiling at her, I assured her that I didn’t carry insurance for the shopping cart and that I wouldn’t be careless to cause anyone harm. In response, she moved into my space, offering to place my groceries on the conveyer counter by the cash register.

Smiling at her in appreciation, I accepted and noticed her and the Cashier exchanging smiles as she mumbled something to her. My things were being checked out along with hers. The Cashier smiled while bagging up my items separately, which the woman then placed on my card. I was speechless; seconds before she walked away, I expressed my appreciation and wished her God’s best. I’ve heard of people paying for things for others, but I had never had a stranger pay for my items. Again, I stated aloud, “God is up to something!” It is so good to recognize God in the good and bad. I am grateful that He doesn’t fluctuate in His emotions like me because I would be up a creek without a paddle. There is so much good around us; it’s up to us to see them. Peace!

BY Marjorie Delores

Nothing To Lose!

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 We might not realize it, but life often unfolds in similar patterns for some of us, which sometimes throws us off guard. Interestingly, sometimes the similarities are so striking in comparison that it makes you wonder, “What?” Maybe it is a way for the cosmos to remind us of our commonalities through those similarities. That the things we believe separate us when in reality, are what resonate with our sameness. This is why it is a loss when we focus on trivialities; it’s wasted energy and time, and time is our most valued commodity. Time lost cannot be regained, and in that time, the world moves on and what eats away at us affects no one but us. Greeting each day with the resolve that things will work out, no matter their challenges, are rewarding because things usually do. There is power and progress within a positive outlook; this is why we look forward to the break of day, the darkness dissipates, and the light shows us the way. Our intrinsic force creates a rhythm to our lives that drives us towards our destiny, like a quiet voice it urges us on. Although our paths may be disrupted by detours, setups, or setbacks, the destination clearly awaits, and no one can take our place, which God promised. So even when it feels like birthing pain or passing kidney stones while getting there, staying the course should be a given. There are no ifs or buts about winning;  because winners never lose! Win, we shall! Therefore, with this said, moving constitutes progress, so let us keep it moving, no matter how small a step. It doesn’t matter if it’s one step at a time; that’s all it takes to finish well.

Being here and having your support have been empowering. This Saturday will be my last post; I will be offline. I am doing a medical procedure that is essential for my health, regrettable the first month after the surgery, I will be offline. In my absence, I pray you and your loved ones will remain safe, and soul expression will be a part of who you are and what you do. I will be here for another three days and then a long pause, my friends take care and remember, stay in the light.  

Within Limitations!

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The elements that form meaning in life are dictated by several factors, most of which are still a mystery. Despite the science, quantum physics, technology, and the rest of the educated explanations offered, those factors have us searching, learning, and still haven’t fully unlocked life’s mystery. My curiosity and the need to better grasp the scope of man’s strength within limitations from the eyes of the un-bored, which we are accidents of whom we ended up with as parents, for me, is a distinctive marker to our limitation. There lies the essence of our frailty, as accidents of birth even for those who are planned. Not one baby was given a choice as to who will parent them. If we had, it would be beyond dispute that humanity’s control is infinite because it began at conception and finalized beyond birth! However, we don’t get a say beforehand who we will share DNA with; that choice lies in the Hands of the Creator of life, God! What is my point?! In observance of the ignorance of self-importance, inflated egos, and blatant arrogance toward the proof of who is and is in charge of births and deaths verified by Him, it is foolish to believe anyone has the upper hand in life and is exempt from life’s perils.

 Whenever God is minimized or treated as an afterthought, it’s beyond comprehension; how could one place themselves at odds with the power that causes one to be? On the other hand, once one has lived and truly done so by experiencing life fully and seeing the constant change it brings, it’s hard not to realize that plans with the utmost consideration sometimes come undone, and there lies proof that nothing is finite except death. At this intersection of life, when death appears, humanity tends to see God clearer. So, these two points, one which introduces life while the other transcends it to the spiritual realm, show that this ultimate mystery starts and ends with God! Yes, life does!

Taken by Marjorie Delores

They Are Special!

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It is so easy to become pessimistic in today’s climate of uncertainties’ within its rapid change, some of which leaves us gasping for breath when we see the senseless cruelties and destruction that have become commonplace. However, despite this, some unsung heroes give of themselves daily without any hidden agendas and are the difference towards the balance that enriches our lives. These people are everywhere; they are our friends, family, neighbors, and people we encounter during brief exchanges. Their presence and impact are resources of goodness we embrace and briefly celebrate through gratitude upon receipt; yes, through our thank yous’ during times of acknowledgment.

We need to lift them up even more as they do us. So today, I endeavor to highlight these forces for good—God’s footsoldiers for assuring His purpose through given goodness. I am sure many of us know such people but maybe have gotten caught up in the daily grind of life, therefore, unwittingly glossing over their importance or ignoring the good they brought to our lives. So, as I embarked upon another transitional period in my life, reflecting on the gift of kindness and goodness I’ve enjoyed throughout these many years by those I call God’s foot soldiers for good, I, too, am grateful to every one of those who made a difference.

Therefore, in recognition, although their names are missing, I have expressed my gratitude privately and encourage you to do the same in acknowledging those you know in whatever manner you deem fit, as long as they come to know that what they’ve done is appreciated. Their efforts will be rewarded within God’s time. One of the most effective tools we have, without a price tag, is the gift of speech. Using the right words can effectively sway the tides of change to the service of all involved. Therefore, this method of expression, by whatever means chosen, should be applied to let those who have blessed our lives know how special they are and that we are thankful for what they brought to our lives—what a wonderful way to begin our week than to tell someone today that they are special. Thanks for visiting, and stay in the light! Peace!

The End Of An Era!

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Yesterday was the end of an era with the death of Queen Elizabeth of England as we know it for over seventy years. At the announcement of her passing, a double rainbow appeared over Buckingham Palace. I was struck by the timing of the appearance of a double rainbow and sought meaning through the scriptures. The Bible gives insight into the importance of all of life, including the significance of rainbows, which symbolize God’s mercies.

Genesis 8:2 speaks about God’s judgment being restrained after the great flood of Noah’s Ark, which occurrences played a pivotal role in furthering God’s plan for humanity. After the rain had stopped and the flood water receded, a rainbow appeared, a sign that life for those saved was assured.

Genesis 9: 12 further explains, “And God said, this is the token of the covenant I make between you and me and every living creature with you, for perpetual generations.” The rainbows’ appearance was a reminder of that covenant between God and humanity; promises made will be fulfilled.

 The book of Revelation further gives added insight into the varying dimensions of God’s power within his beauty and continued assurance of his covenant; 4: 3 states, “And he that sat was to look upon like a jasper and sardine stone: and there was a rainbow round about the throne, in sight like unto an emerald.” The rainbow is a symbol of God’s faithfulness and mercy, and may the people of England and all over the world who are mourning the loss of Queen Elizabeth find comfort knowing God is ever-present and He is a comforter. Soul Expression extends condolences and support in this time of grieving, and may your strength be renewed within the time of acceptance with heightened purpose. God Bless you all! Soul Expression

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