Try

Good morning all, hope you are well.
Happy, healthy and chill.
I have been on vacation for the past,
almost, two weeks,
I had a list of things I wanted,
to do and see, and I have managed most of it.

Caught up on some reading
made a few resolutions as far,
as reading is concerned,
more on that later.

Went to the museum,
went to the movies,
did some walking,
spent time with mom,
with friends.
Read two books,
shredded some papers.
Took lots of pictures,
went to parts of the city,
I don't normally frequent.
Got some air,
got some sun.
Watched a few seasons of,
Damages.

Mom and I went to the open air museum,
downtown, part of,
Montreal's 375 celebrations,
it was a lot of fun,
but mom had an accident,
she tripped on,
a foot traffic heavy,
hazard laden sidewalk,
could have happened to anyone.
She hurt her wrist,
a bad sprain and has been,
in pain for more than a week.
Ice and Aleve, rest,
it has healed well,
she is almost 100 percent.

My vacation was like...
life,
fun and frustrating,
scary and jubilant,
all at once,
the accident sucked,
and, there are many challenges,
in my life and of those around me,
but, mostly,
I don't have a whole lot,
to complain about.
Not having your dream job,
is not much to complain about,
in a world where people starve,
live in war torn constant fear,
don't know where their next meal,
will come from.
In a world where millions,
have no homes, have no future,
a world of pain and disease.

A few years ago,
when I had my surgery,
it was a big operation,
but, I was expected to make,
a full recovery,
I had no cancer,
after a few months,
convalescence,
all would be well.
It was hard, it was painful.
The last evening I was,
in the hospital,
my best bud was visiting,
she visited everyday I was there,
she helped me walk, very slowly,
and with an old lady stoop,
down the corridor.
I had been in the hospital,
for four days at this point,
but, hadn't walked out of my room.
I didn't have Cancer,
but, I was on a Cancer ward.
As we slowly made our way past,
people's rooms,
I could see many people,
obviously, in pain, despair,
people dying.
It gave me some perspective,
on my pain, my fear.

I made a promise to myself,
that evening, 
back in my bed sweating,
from the exertion,
and the over heated hospital room,
it was February after all.
I vowed to not complain,
over dumb ass things,
to reach for all the good,
I have in my life.

I haven't always succeeded,
but,
I try, hard.

I used to think,
surrounding yourself,
with smart people was,
important,
it is,
but, more important still,
surrounding yourself with,
kind people,
and at this stage of my life,
I would add,
people who try,
to see,
everyday,
just how lucky,
they-we are.

Be well you all,
enjoy the Summer.
Later girls,
BB

* I mentioned earlier some reading resolutions. I find in the past few years I have been reading less and spending more time on social media, I need to reverse that, I meed to see people more in person, when possible and to read more. While on vacation I have read 2 books and am almost finished a third. I have read at least 10 articles that had been lingering in my articles to read file on my laptop. Social media is great but, concentration and serious reading have to regain their place in my life.
I don't believe my path will be found on Face Book. So, resolutions, start every morning with 30 minutes of reading, a book. End everyday with 30 minutes of reading, a book- carry one with me, always- put away the phone, often. Try... and don't beat myself up when I fail, just try, again*

Church People

Good morning you all.
I hope your Summer is going well.
Summer has had a tough start,
here in my beautiful ugly.
The rain has continued on,
from April and May,
June was rainy.

But, now July is here,
the hot and sunny month.
Today is a gorgeous day,
the first official day of
....
MY VACATION!!

Yay


I had a pretty cool,
Canada Day weekend.

I am still feeling grounded.
My spiritual quest,
seems to be good for me.

I find I am more calm about,
things,
in general.
I still have anxious moments,
grumpy moments,
periods of doubt,
I am a thinking and doubting human:-)

I do however feel-
centered,
and I know this might,
sound weird-
thankful.

Thankful for what,
the spiritual quest,
has brought me.
I have met so many,
bright, positive, beautiful people.
My church people.

I used to have certain notions,
about church people.
I had a bit of a,
not precisely... distrust,
but not a positive view,
either.
A lot of hate and ugliness,
has been perpetrated,
in the name of God,
via various religions,
but,
along with that much good,
as well.

Church people are like everyone-
some are nice and friendly ,
some are shy and reserved, 
some are closed minded,
some are what my dad used to,
refer to as,
the keepers of the truth.
Many are good, real people.

When I first went to St-Jax's,
many people welcomed me,
with open arms,
a few were cautious,
which I get,
trust takes time,
I could have been,
a come for a few weeks,
kind of person.

But, I now have been,
going to church since,
late January,
so almost 6 months.
I have been through,
the Alpha course,
which I loved.
I occasionally volunteer,
for the welcoming group,
greeting people at the door,
smiling,
saying good morning,
that comes easy to me,
the smiling.
I have a bit of a reputation,
as a smiler.

This week a woman who had never,
really spoken to me,
she had smiled, politely,
gave me a very enthusiastic,
good morning,
we exchanged pleasantries,
and I felt as if something,
had changed.
I have been in the congregation,
long enough for her,
to consider me,
one of them,
I think.

Faith is not as yet,
perfectly defined for me,
but, I do feel part of a,
whole.
Not quite family,
warm and friendly,
loved and loving.

I look forward to Sunday morning,
I get up at 7 o'clock,
voluntarily.
I like my church,
it's people,
it makes me feel centered,
light.

Be well,
you all.
Later girls,
BB

A five, maybe?

Hello all, hope the Summer,
has been good to you,
so far.
It's grey and muggy,
here in,
my beautiful ugly.

Today is the first day,
of the long weekend,
here in Quebec,
La St-Jean, la Fete Nationale.

I am hanging out,
drinking tea,
enjoying some solitude.
Have lots of,
social activity ,
coming up,
on the weekend.
Time with friends,
old and new.

This has been,
a week,
of reflection,
introspection,
and frustration.

I just noticed in,
preparing this post,
that it is the 800 Th.
Wow, that ain't nothing.
Been more than seven years,
since I started this blog.

Some people journal,
I blog.

I 'hear' that blogs,
have become,
a little bit,
passe.
Hmm,
I think I may have become,
a little bit,
passe.
I'm fine with that,
truly.

Weird, I keep searching,
for what it is,
I am looking for,
and yet,
I am mostly ok, 
with who I am.

I am.
neither young,
nor old.

I have people who love me,
I strive to learn new things,
everyday.
My health is pretty darn good,
and my mind quite sharp.

I have more confidence,
in my abilities,
than I ever have before.

I realize that by,
conventional society,
standards,
I am not very,
successful.

I have no money,
no career,
no car,
no house.
I have no marriage,
I have no children.

I like comfort,
I like exploring for meaning,
I like to spend time with people,
I like to walk,
I like to talk,
a lot
I like to do,
what I want to do. 
I have no real ambition,
in a standard sense of the term.

But, I am lucky,
might even say,
blessed.
I have received many,
kindnesses,
in my life,
from loved ones,
and relative strangers.

I have had some difficult,
passages,
and have weathered some,
better than others,
grief is particularly,
challenging,
for me.

As I have gotten older,
I don't bounce back,
quite like I used to-
But, since I am not,
a rubber ball..
That's ok.

I tend to not lie to myself,
about how everything is fine,
anymore.
I face difficulties,
more than I used to,
I know the consequences of burying hurt
sometimes with drama,
and panic,
but, more and more,
with real emotion,
and I hope, reason.

I do trust in the future,
I have faith,
it ebbs and flows,
but,
I really do believe,
in the inherent goodness,
of people.
But, I also find my,
bullshit detector,
to be,
pretty strong.

I appreciate sincerity,
and earnestness so much,
even when it is,
to the point,
of naivete.
I have less and less,
respect for snark and sarcasm.
I have also learned that,
some smiles and honey tones,
hide,
bad things.
and that some of the,
gruffest people are also the,
kindest.

I am who I am.
Neither young,
nor old.
Far from perfect.

Occasionally,
I am shallow, superficial,
unkind, weak,
but,
I work at improving,
and at not beating myself up.

Every day I pray to be kinder,
to be more patient,
with people,
with their foibles,
with me and my...limits.

Last night,
I was watching a,
television show ,
the Big C,
with Laura Linney,
and Oliver Platt.
I love both of them.
At one point,
Platt's character,
Paul,
Linney's husband in the show,
says to their couples therapist,
'she is a a ten and I am a four,
or between a four and a six,
on a good day'.

I loved that,
I feel that way about this stage,
of my life,
it's between a four and a six,
some parts are tens,
some parts are twos,
but, on the whole,
no complaints

:-)
Thank you, all for
being there.
Be well.

Later girls,
BB



Bright sunshinny days

Hello all,
the sun, has arrived.
Hallelujah :-)

We seem to have been,
drowning,
in rain,
here in my beautiful ugly.
April rained steady,
May was rough as well.
Even June which can be,
quite hot and hazy.

Last week,
I thought I would lose,
my mind,
and that's why,
I didn't write,
who needs to read,
whining,
we all have our battles,
we all occasionally,
feel like we are,
losing it.
Full moon and practically,
a week of rain,
not pretty:
'nough said.

The sun is back,
with a vengeance,
kind of scorching,
these last few days,
but, you know,
I got my  shorts game
down,
oh yeah,
fun in the sun.


I am reading a fabulous book,
almost done,
love it:
Help Thanks Wow: 3 Essential Prayers,
by Anne Lamott,
fabulous,
she never disappoints.
She makes me laugh,
out loud on the subway,
she also makes me cry,
quietly,
same location,
I like to read on the subway.
This book is a perfect,
carry with you book.
It's funny, touching, 
full of insight,
it's smart not cloying,
or goody goody.
She is a good person,
she is flawed,
she tries, she fails,
she succeeds,
she is weak,
she is strong.

I love her writing,
it makes me think.
It feels like,
I am  'listening' to a,
friend,
a smart funny friend,
who has been around,
the block a few times,
knows the lay of the land,
and, 
knows that ultimately,
we don't know,
shit,
but,
we should keep learning,
and trying.
We should reach for meaning,
keep the faith.

Lamott's book,
made me cry for,
my gone,
but, not forgotten,
beloved cat, Dude,

 
brought back feelings,
of doubt and the "did I do,
the right thing",
questionings,
and a few pages later,
reminded me,
that I loved and cherished him,
and did the best I could,
always,
that I tried to avoid him,
suffering,
and prayed for him,
to go in his sleep,
but, it didn't work out,
that way,
sometimes it doesn't,
that doesn't mean,
we shouldn't,
keep hoping,
for it,
praying,
for it,
whatever term you are most comfortable with

Her book,
reiterates, to me,
that it is ok,
to ask for help,
it is also important,
to say,
thanks,
to our people,
to a greater force,
God,
whoever, whatever,
and that we are,
surrounded by beauty,
wonder,
and... life.

So get out the sunscreen,
put on those shorts,
no, not those, the nice ones, you only live once:-)
get out there and soak up,
the sunshinny days

be well,
all of you

Later girls,
BB








Changes

Good day you all,
hope you are all well.
I am,
well, that is :-)
I have made some,
changes in my life.

I asked for a raise,
at my crappy job,
the manager,
hemmed and hawed and,
said, well, you know,
she couldn't make,
any promises,
and if there was something,
it wouldn't be much, 
bla bla bla.
So, I left her office,
I decided, 
that evening,
while working,
that I would give notice,
I did,
this is my last week.

I take next week off,
vacation time,
rest and relaxation,
the week after that I find,
a new job.

This change has been,
a long time coming.
Time to move on.

When I first took this job,
I needed it, 
it was a transition job.
It allowed me to go from,
the closing of my bookstore,
and then,
the death of my anarchist,
through some health issues.
Through griefs,
and rebuilding,
my confidence,
my health,
my life.
For that I will always be grateful.

It was a perfect job,
for me,
it didn't require too much,
of me,
and I was very good at it,
I talked to people,
which I love.
The thing with me,
and, 
I suspect most people,
I want a job that requires,
my brain, my personality,
my strengths,
I don't want a job,
that will suck out,
my life force,
or that exhausts me,
or one where I am,
disrespected.

At this point,
I feel like paying me,
minimum wage,
is disrespecting me.
I am worth,
more than that,
figuratively and literally.

I may take another,
in between job,
but what I really want,
is one that uses,
my people skills,
my communication skills,
that pays me a living wage.

I want to grow and help others,
to grow,
in whatever way I can.

Change is inevitable,
and in this case,
required,
and most especially,
sought out.

more to come, soon.

Be well you all
Later girls,
BB



Am I a zealot??

Hello all,
hope you are all well.
It is early afternoon,
in my beautiful ugly.
Mom has gone visiting,
for a few days.
I am sitting at the computer, 
having partaken of some delicious,
homemade vegetable soup,
added some leftover yams,
to the mix, yum.

Normally, at this time,
on a Wednesday,
I would be,
getting off,
the metro(subway),
walking towards,
the adult education center,
where I volunteer. 
Unfortunately.
both my student,
and, her husband have,
had health issues lately,
so no tutoring,
today.

I have found myself,
with some extra time,
and, have decided to,
explore a topic,
that has been floating,
around my head for a few weeks.

As you know from,
reading the blog,
I have been exploring,
my spiritual side,
and I am happy in,
my exploration.
I have met people,
I like,
encountered ideas,
and a way of living,
my life,
which appeals to me.
I have never been,
a joiner,
nor a naysayer.
I have always,
believed that love,
is the way,
to understanding each other,
sharing the world among,
ourselves in harmony.
We need more love,
in the world,
desperately.

You all remember that old Depeche Mode song: People Are People?
People are people so why should it be
You and I should get along so awfully
So we’re different colours
And we’re different creeds
And different people have different needs
It’s obvious you hate me
Though I’ve done nothing wrong
I never even met you
So what could I have done
I can’t understand
What makes a man
Hate another man
Help me understand
The Christian message,
is one of love,
of acceptance,
of diversity.
It isn't always,
interpreted that way,
that doesn't,
nullify it's meaning.

A few weeks ago,
I was talking about,
church,
with my girl,
and I asked her,
what she thought.
She said it seemed,
to make me happy,
but, that she had worried,
that I would become,
a zealot.
Hmm, me a zealot??

zeal·ot
ˈzelət/
noun
noun: zealot; plural noun: zealots
  1. a person who is fanatical and uncompromising in pursuit of their religious, political, or other ideals.
    synonyms: fanatic, enthusiast, extremist, radical, young Turk, diehard, true believer, activist, militant; More

    • historical
      a member of an ancient Jewish sect aiming at a world Jewish theocracy and resisting the Romans until AD 70.
      noun: Zealot; plural noun: Zealots
Interesting word zealot,
it can be very strong,
or sort of soft,
fanatic or enthusiast, to me those,
aren't really synonyms but hey...

When I shared this reflection,
with a lovely man,
from church, he seemed to think, 
I had a bit of a,
zealot in me,
That when I embraced,
something,
I was all in.
Hmm.
He also felt,
that I had a bit,
of a provocateur in me, 
and pointed to this blog,
as a manifestation of that,
spirit.
I felt no criticism on his part,
he was telling it as he saw it,
he's that kind of a guy,
straight shooter, 
sincere,
nice guy.

This got me thinking.
I don't believe I am,
or ever will be,
a zealot.
I do however,
like to talk,share,
explore,discover.
I care about people,
passionately.
I love the Christian message,
reading the bible,
singing hymns,
calms me, fills me with love.

My objective in writing about,
these thoughts and feelings,
is not to convert or evangelize, 
it is to share.

Of the 16 personality types in,
Myers-Briggs Type indicator,
I am :
Extraversion, Intuition, Feeling, Perception,
The Campaigner,
ENFPs are fiercely independent, and much more than stability and security, they crave creativity and freedom.

Hmm maybe I am a zealot,
after all




Be well you all.
Later girls,
BB

Spiritual quest part IV

Hello all, hope you are,
all,
well.
April's biggest challenge,
here in the beautiful ugly,
has been staying...
dry, 
lots of rain.

May is,
so far, 
all over the place,
Aw, Spring, I love ya,
you may seem fickle to some,
but to me,
you are renewal in all its,
joys and difficulties.

Busy with my,
tutoring,
work, 
life.
I continue my spiritual quest,
I feel more and more at home,
in faith.
Who would have thought?

My Alpha course, 
Alpha journey,
continues,
I leave every week,
with questions,
and ponderings,
I love that. 
I live for food for thought
:-)

This week's theme was,
one I was looking forward to,
What next? what to do,
with the rest of my life?

As many of you know,
I have been at,
a crossroads,
for a while,
I haven't chosen a path,
I have been exploring,
different avenues, roads,
not investing myself,
on a course of action.
Not exactly idling but,
slow pace.

These last few months,
I have felt much more,
in tune with myself,
physically,
mentally,
in my core.
I am over,
the physical shocks,
of surgery,
the fear of dying that,
accompanied it.

I have healed from,
the pain of losing,
my friend, the anarchist.
I miss him still,
but it no longer,
involves searing pain,
I smile when I,
think of him.

So this week,
I went to Alpha,
with joy and enthusiasm,
and,
was glad to see,
the people,
who I have grown so,
fond of,
a community, warmth,
and, faith.

We watched the old version,
of the video in French,
because the new version,
wasn't ready.
The old version,
isn't as well suited,
to the open and modern,
church that is St-Jax's
IMHO.
Long story short:
the video,
spoke of the bible,
being a way of living,
a guide book,
that God has given us,
and the guy spoke,
specifically about,
sexuality,
and offered up,
specifically,
a hetero normative version,
of the world.

Cold shower.

Now, to be clear,
we all live in a,
hetero normative,
world,
and we adjust,
and honestly it is expected.
Norm is norm.
But, what I have come to,
appreciate,
about St-Jax's,
like the other places I feel at home,
is that I am liked,
loved by some,
for who I am.
We don't discuss such things,
why would we,
we accept each other,
for who we are,
but, I can usually smell,
a bigot and hommophobe,
at a fair distance,
and,
like all groups,
there are undoubtedly,
a few in church.
But, I felt in my heart,
in my bones,
that the leadership,
and most of the congregation,
wasn't.

So, it was with a weight,
in my heart,
that I emerged from the video room,
to the discussion area,
I went to get some herbal tea,
and, wondered if I would have,
to leave St-Jax's.

I sat down with my tea,
and found the leader,
of the group and others,
discussing,
the different tone of these,
videos.
It seems they had all been,
uncomfortable with the video,
as well.
and they agreed that sincere love,
is just that.
Phew



My perception about,
St-Jax's taking people,
for who they are,
was right.

The thing is I could leave.
I have lived without St-Jax's 
and faith in my life,
before,
and I could do it again,
but,
I find that,
more and more,
I would rather...
not

Be well you all, thank you,
for accompanying me on my,
journey

Later girls,
BB

Belief

I have been very busy,
lately,
well,
by my standards, busy.

Lots of social activity,
learning,
cultural outings.
Went to see Book Of Mormon,
with my Bff for her birthday-
so smart, so funny, so irreverent,
and yes, a little offensive,
but we loved it.

Funny, how things, 
come to you,
to flesh out thoughts,
ideas,
creative questions,
or meaning of life,
interrogations,
a little mysterious.
I am not referring to research,
but, just living,
your life,
and things appearing to shed light,
on barely flickering ideas.

I have been writing about this,
for a while now,
how faith and specifically church,
has brought,
centered ness into my life.

Now to be clear,
it hasn't made me happy,
it has made me calm,
well, calmer.

I am happy, I was happy,
I am blessed, 
I have an amazing family,
friends who are...well,
the best there is,
I have love and passion.
My health is good.

What church has brought,
is an opportunity,
to work on letting go,
of anger,
an opportunity to forgive.

I struggle with some of these,
things,
it is hard for me to let go,
of hurt,
of anger,
but I am working on it.

I find that faith,
is a lot like love.
You have to believe,
you have to trust,
you have to make,
yourself vulnerable.

Faith isn't the way for,
everyone,
I don't think.
But, belief is,
living your life ironically,
is bullshit,
love isn't ironic,
neither is goodness.

Sarcasm and snarkiness, 
hide pain.
Laughing is good,
essential to long life,
like singing and loving,
but,
profiting from others,
weaknesses and foibles,
laughing at them,
isn't.

As Bruce Springsteen sings:

Still at the end of every hard earned day people find some reason to believe

When things are hard,
belief is all the more important,
but, even us happy blessed people,
need belief,
well, I think so

still fleshing this idea out, I wonder what you all think about this.


Be well you all.
Later girls,
BB

Taking notes, taking note

Hello all, hope your Easter,
long weekend was,
great.
I had a marvelous time,
stimulation, reflection, relaxation, exercise,
all of it. 
The weather was a little of everything,
good, bad, a tiny bit ugly at times,
but,
truly,
it was all good.
I went to a Passover celebration,
at St-Jax's,
fascinating and inspiring.
On Good Friday,
I went to the Cathedral,
humbling and thought provoking,
and on,
Easter Sunday,
I went with mom,
to my wonderful church,
there was the Montreal Gospel Choir,
we sang and danced,
with enthusiasm if not,
great rhythm :-)
there were baptisms,
so much joy,
so much love,
really a day of hallelujahs.

I have been feeling fantastic,
lately.
It seems,
faith has brought,
calm to my life.
Faith is different,
for everyone,
I think,
I'm no expert,
but, for me, it brings,
centered ness,
and, what I can only describe,
as peace,
of mind, of heart, of purpose.

I was watching a you tube vlogger,
the other day,
he's an ok guy,
a bit hipster but,
anyway,
he said something,
that rang so true,
to me,
resonated,

there are two kinds of people in the world,
those who want to do things and,
those who do things.

He went on to say he wanted to be a doer,
this was in the context of him cutting and bleaching, his hair

Taking chances,
moving out of your comfort zone,
it's a good thing,
doesn't always involve,
risky behaviour,
either,
it didn't for me.
What it did mean,
was not just thinking,
about going to church,
on Christmas Eve,
but actually suggesting it,
to mom and us going.
It also meant not just thinking,
about volunteering when I have,
more time,
but, noting that I have...
plenty of time,
and just walking in,
to the community center,
to volunteer for literacy tutoring.

I have always loved,
notebooks,
but,
I used to leave them at home.
Now I have a small pocket one,
if I need to leave someone a note,
happens less and less,
a smallish not too small,
idea jotter,

as an aside,
I used to remember everything,
no need for notes,
but, recently,
I was listening to the Sunday sermon,
and it struck an idea,
a parallel in my head,
and, I knew it would make,
a really good blog post-topic,
after listening and enjoying,
the sermon,
not writing down a thought provoking note,
I forgot it,
the thought has not returned, yet, or has it,
who knows??

point is,
notebooks (real or phone) are our friends,
I prefer the paper version,
no one thinks you are,
checking your face book updates.

I have an Alpha and theological notes,
notebook,
and a journal, I keep notes,
I no longer rely on memory,
take notes,
take note,
live your life,
consciously with intention,
experience,
don't just let things,
happen to you,
experience them,
relish in them,
learn from them,
take notes,
take note,
that is my current modus operandi

Be well, you all

Later girls,
BB

p.s this blog was written last week, sorry for the lateness, been a busy week
:-)


Notes on spiritual quest part III

Hello all,
hope these notes,
find all of you,
in good spirits.
I have had a cold,
for a few days now,
and the rain has been with us,
here in,
my beautiful ugly.

Rain in April means,
flowers, to come, awakening, growth,
no way that is... negative.

I am feeling very strong,
centered, lately.
Not necessarily,
buoyant and smiley,
but, quiet.
A resonating peace inside me.
I do believe,
that is a direct result,
of my heart and mind,
being open to the spiritual.

I think of it as the St-Jax's affect
:-)

I went to St-Jax's with an open mind,
a yearning,
I have been welcomed with love,
and prayer, with humour,
with intelligence.
Strangely enough,
I seem to fit there,
I have not contorted myself,
to fit a mold,
nor have I have been made,
to feel I should.
Many of the people there,
have a similar thirst,
thirsts, even.
For knowledge, for meaning.

This past Saturday,
we had our holy spirit day,
we watched videos, we sang,
we worshiped and prayed,
those of us who wished to,
called to the holy spirit,
in whatever way we wanted.

I felt at peace, I felt,
cherished and loved,
I felt safe.

My faith, manifests itself,
quietly,
it builds a little at a time,
it is of the mind,
and,
of the heart.
It is calming, it is centering.
It may have been there all along

In the last year,
I have cleaned out,
the negative influences,
in my life,
the meanness of some,
masquerading,
as humour and wit.
The disparaging of divergent,
opinions, points of view.

I would have felt embarrassed,
to share the fact that I like,
church,that I look forward to going,
that it fills a part of me,
that needed,
sustenance.

I am not embarrassed,
I am not preaching,
I am sharing.

blessings and peace be upon you

be well

later girls,
BB