Lessons

Life is short. As I’ve aged I’ve been made fully aware that this statement is all too true. We’ve lost so many loved ones and grieving is endless. So many have gone before us that I have come to recognize the importance of grieving and working through the grieving process, our health depends on it.

What I’ve learned, too, is that I’m capable of grieving in my own way and if I don’t attend a funeral, it’s not out of disrespect but allowing myself to grieve in my own way. I have helped many family and friends with funeral arrangements and some are harder than others, looking at the many photographic memories of the deceased I relive my own memories with that person. Sometimes, I laugh, sometimes I cry. I have learned through years of healing that the person never leaves us, they are just here in spirit, no longer in our physical world. This brings me comfort.

What’s my point? I’m not sure there is one. I am heading to Fort Liard today to listen to an Elder’s story for the Na Deh Kleh newsletter that I created for our people, and I thought about the lessons I’ve learned over the years. Grief is such a big one, the importance of grieving in a healthy way. Listening to the women in the healing circle yesterday and seeing Grandmas cry for their losses, made me think of years of pain our people have endured. It hurts my heart to see a Grandma cry for a child they’ve lost or a Mom cry for her son. Our people deserve to heal.

I remember many a day when I’d get in there and party with the family and friends of a deceased one to celebrate their life after the funeral. What I didn’t know at the time was that addictions stunt our grieving process, so we remain stuck in that time, finding it harder and harder to let the deceased go. Memories are relived and they are like a record player in our minds, stuck skipping. This ends when we stop using and start addressing the pain and start the healing work our bodies, minds and spirits need.

I still feel pain when I recall the good memories of past loved ones, anger when I think they could have been spared life if only they’d stopped drinking/drugging, and I still cry when the tears come. Healing and tears are good. Allow your self to cry but also allow yourself to enjoy life, too, that is what our loved ones would want. They would want us to be happy, healthy and to keep living life.

Healing and tears are good. Allow your self to cry but also allow yourself to enjoy life, too, that is what our loved ones would want.

Before I wrap up, I also want to share that grieving is not only about losing someone we love. Grieving is many things. We grieve when we lose or leave people, places and things. I grieved the loss of my favorite coat, a job I had to leave, and have grieved favorite places I’ve visited. Ahh, the ocean. My spirit aches for the ocean. So find someone to talk about those things, too. Find a professional or a friend you can trust to listen and help you unload some of that pain, so you can live fully today.

I wish for our people to heal all the years of pain, grief and loss. It seems endless for sure but it’s possible to take care of us so the pain does not control our lives or us. Creator intended for us to live in harmony and I’m sure that is what our loved ones, in the physical and spiritual world, want for us, too.

The sun is shining, so bless you this beautiful day. I wish you a great weekend.

 

Renee

Reconciliation

Did I spell that right? Rec-on-cil-i-ation.

I’m tired and it’s late so I’m simply going to share something Chastity Davis said today that hit me right in the gizzards. She asked, “What do you need to reconcile within yourself before you can offer reconciliation to the world?”

Wow, right? POW, right in the gizzards! I am thankful for today. Thankful for this amazing day amongst my relatives in Treaty 8 territory, the home of our people.

Before I go, I leave you with something else Ms. Davis shared that was shared with her also, “You are the healer you’ve been waiting for.” Meaning, everything we need to heal ourselves is within us, we just have to do the work. So, so true. How do I know it’s true? I know it’s true because I’ve done the work and the work continues, every day. It never ends. We are always “a work in progress” because there is always room for improvement. Every day is a new day to learn and grow; a gift to us from the Creator. I am thankful.

Again, one last time…

“What do you need to reconcile within yourself before you can offer reconciliation to the world?”

Good night, world. Be kind to one another. Thank you for your words today, Chastity. I look forward to exploring that question more for myself.

Renee

 

 

They All Count

This is still a post, so it counts.

I’m tired. When I’m tired, I get grouchy.

When I’m grouchy, I can’t get “in the zone”.

When I’m not “in the zone”, I can’t write or be creative.

When I can’t write or be creative, you get posts like this. K? Cool.

Peace out. Sleep tight and so will I. Tomorrow is a new day to start fresh. YES!!

Renee

It’s a Talk Show Life

Have you ever wanted to call Dr. Phil on your family? No? Me neither.

Actually, I’ve thought about it more than once. Honestly. Anyone else? What would you say? What is the one big issue you’d want help with? Parental issues, sibling rivalry, midlife crisis, unhappy marriage, love triangle, unruly kid, mooching adult kids? There’s a lot we all could choose from I’m sure.

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If you contacted the show, do you think your family would participate? There’s a lot to consider. Would work let you take the time off? Would you forget to turn the coffee maker off? Would your life be worse off than before? What would you wear? Do you think calling the show would result in your family being even more pissed off at your or at each other? What will Jane or John do when Dr. Phil surprises them with mandatory treatment? Flip out and tell the camera guy to fuck off or decide to go but decide they hate your guts and are never going to speak to you again? Imagine that scene!

Isn’t it funny to think of the reality of all that happening? What if you got a call tomorrow from a Dr. Phil producer to be on the show? Or better yet, Jerry Springer? We all know Jerry Springer is going to result in some missing hair and/or water to the face. Let’s pray none of us ever land on Jerry Springer.

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Ok, enough of that, I better get to bed. I had myself some laughs. I hope you did too. Let the scenario play out in your mind with the members of your family. It’s actually pretty comical.

Good night.

 

Renee

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Five Questions

It’s day four of my one hundred posts in one hundred days. Today, since I wanted to keep it simple, I’m going to answer five random questions from the book, Question of the Day by Al Katkowsky.

  1. What was the hardest thing you had to do that yielded a huge benefit?

First thing that came to mind was leaving my job. I had been there four years and absolutely loved what I did. I never considered it a job; it was something I loved to do. To me, it wasn’t work and I believe I provided an invaluable service to the people I served. The huge benefit in leaving my work is that I got to heal my mind and spirit from the damage that was caused to me mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually.

The other thing that came to mind was fire walking at Unleash the Power Within! RAWR! I AM A FIREWALKER! I walked on fire, a bed of burning hot coals, and I didn’t feel a thing! I did it. I faced my fears, got in a peak state and kicked ass across that fire. BOOM! What’s the benefit of that? I know I can do anything I set my mind to! I am capable, courageous, smart, fun, and fucking badass! Whoooo!

  1. Who did you most recently meet that made you feel that you really need that kind of person in your life?

Helen and Ivonne, Tony Robbins and my fellow Fire Walkers from Unleash the Power Within San Jose. Each person in that SAP Centre was there with good intentions and a fiery spirit ready to conquer goals and smash the shit out of fears and judgments limiting us. Together we made moves, shook our asses and walked all over the fires in our lives to bust out smiling with an even more fiery spirit than before we got there. I need all those kinds of people in my life. We all do!

  1. What did you most recently notice someone getting paid for, or doing professionally, that you know you could do better?

Ha-ha! This is on page 85 of the book, not even joking, and I randomly picked questions I opened up the page to. This was one of them.

See question and answer 1. Simply put, my communications and newsletter job, hands down.

  1. What do you accept in friends that you don’t accept in strangers?

Well, this is an easy one. I accept friends coming over, taking their shoes off and visiting, strangers not so much.

Actually, that’s not entirely true. My family has, on more than one occasion, invited strangers to crash at our homes because we’re nice (maybe naïve, too) like that. Ha-ha. I believe most people in this world are good people and we like to help people, even strangers. It’s good karma.

  1. Who or what did you not realize you were attached to until that person or thing was gone?

My older than old balls, ratty old Point Zero coat that I ordered from the Sears catalogue in the mid-nineties. I kept trying to part with it but could never seem to let it go. My grandma repaired it for me, the cuffs had because worn out in patched, the zipper on the pouch didn’t work and then finally this winter, I dropped it off at the thrift store. Low and behold, my son asked where it was and I told him. He wanted it for skidooing and winters at the cabin, so we tried to go reclaim it but they said they must’ve thrown it out if it was damaged. It was time to let it go obviously. Needless to say, I was sad. I was hoping it was there so my son could keep it, which meant it would still be in my life. Ha-ha.

That’s my five random questions and answers. I love to write but sometimes, even I need prompts. I’d love to see your responses to the questions above, too. Feel free to post your responses in the comments section.

It’s been a long but really good day. I got to spend the day with my fellow firewalker that’s in town for the weekend. Yes!

Good night and God bless.

Renee

Goals and Gratitude

Good morning. The sun is coming up and I am on day two of my one hundred day challenge. I will write one hundred posts in one hundred days. That is my goal.

I woke up thinking, ‘what am I going to write about for ninety-nine days?’ I started yesterday, so technically, there is ninety-nine days to go. Waking up and getting right down to it seems to be helping. Crank some tunes and get on with it.

Today, it’s simple. Gratitude. Gratefulness.

Gratitude, according to Google, is the quality of being thankful, readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.

To recognize day ninety-nine, I’m going to list 99 things I’m grateful for, so here goes:

  1. My family, including the friends I consider family,
  2. The sun coming up shining on the tops of the trees,
  3. Sunrises,
  4. Sunsets,
  5. Driving on the highway when you first notice it’s like summer driving, clear of snow, just you and the highway,
  6. Cranked tunes,
  7. The smell of the coffee brewing,
  8. Silence in the early morning before the world awakens,
  9. Writing,
  10. My MacBook,
  11. Running water,
  12. A roof over our heads,
  13. Money in the bank,
  14. Chickadees chickadeeing,
  15. Journaling,
  16. Reading,
  17. Books,
  18. Bookstores that I can browse for hours in,
  19. Photos,
  20. Sobriety,
  21. My past, it is why I am who I am,
  22. My colorful art from Ashton and Danielle,
  23. Dishwashers, not human, but of the machine kind,
  24. Growing up in a small town,
  25. Small town life,
  26. Childhood friends from Kotchea Sub,
  27. The puddle that always accumulated by the stop sign that allowed us kids hours of play in the spring,
  28. Making mud pies and chocolate milk as a kid (aka dirt and muddy water and no, we never really ate them, but damn, they looked good enough to eat for sure!),
  29. My grandparents, George and Mary Behn, and Fred and Madeline Burke,
  30. Bananas,
  31. Fry meat, potatoes and onions,
  32. A cool shower on a hot summer day,
  33. Our ability to help others,
  34. Education,
  35. Na Deh Kleh Newsletter,
  36. Sober Indigenous men; nothing is sexier than a strong, sober, Indigenous man, who takes care of their shit,
  37. Same goes for women,
  38. A drivers license,
  39. Free courses to learn and grow,
  40. Our public library,
  41. Our cabin,
  42. The wind in the trees,
  43. The wind in my hair,
  44. Sitting by the water,
  45. The ocean,
  46. Vancouver, everything about it, makes it my favorite city,
  47. Airplanes,
  48. Road trips,
  49. Bucket lists,
  50. Checking off items on bucket lists,
  51. Rowing machines, try the one at Infinite Strength Wellness, I love it!,
  52. Getting rid of junk,
  53. Good perfume,
  54. My duvet,
  55. Solitude,
  56. Watching my kids laugh together or with their friends,
  57. Family adventures, road trips, travels, meetings,
  58. Lynda Gwynn,
  59. The Dene drums,
  60. Sweat lodge,
  61. Arizona meetings,
  62. Life on the Rez,
  63. People who stand up for what’s right for everyone’s benefit,
  64. Dateline and 48 Hours, what else would I do on a Friday and Saturday evening?,
  65. Jonni, Cash and Cannon, what’s life without dogs?,
  66. Tony Robbins’ Unleash the Power Within,
  67. Robin Sharma,
  68. Tim Ferris,
  69. My Muck boots,
  70. My Sanucks,
  71. Passionate people, you inspire me,
  72. My voice,
  73. Medical staff in Fort Nelson, it’s nice to have the same doctor since before your babies were born,
  74. Jamie McDonald at Murray GMC, she’s truly the best,
  75. Corbett, Orthodontist,
  76. Great customer service, tip those people,
  77. Our newspaper delivery girl, Sydney (I hope I spelled her name right),
  78. Popcorn and a movie,
  79. Shameless, it makes me appreciate how good life we have, lol,
  80. Kakawis and the families who got us through the first 6 weeks of our new life,
  81. Summer nights in Fort Nelson,
  82. Northern lights,
  83. The brothers I never had, Josh (RIP), Jonas, Brad,
  84. Fort Liard, it brought me so many good things, including my husband and FTL family and friends,
  85. The FNFN Lands staff and building, they helped me through a real difficult time and made me feel welcome, I sure miss them and their space,
  86. Our traditional medicines that heal us,
  87. Healing work,
  88. Days Inn haha,
  89. Our Alberta family,
  90. Josh and Arn’s hospitality,
  91. Crystal’s cooking and creativity,
  92. My husband’s ability to fix, build and work on pretty much anything,
  93. Tattoos, I think I need at least one more,
  94. Bannock,
  95. Rodeo dances, they’re the best,
  96. Laughing with Greg, it’s my favourite thing to do,
  97. Music concerts,
  98. Memories of loved ones past, and finally,
  99. My blog.

Whew! Happy Monday! This is my reminder to start every day with a grateful heart. I’m so grateful for life and the opportunity to wake up to a new day every morning, a clean slate, to improve, learn and grow.

Renee