life, love,art. heart failure and assorted ramblings

life, love,art. heart failure and assorted ramblings

Don't Talk Like That...

I write to find out what my heart thinks....
I am here to celebrate my life, to uncover my fears, to hold on to love, to grieve my losses, to laugh long and hard, and to learn how to live a full magnificent life with heart failure. I am honoring my creativity, and exploring all of my emotions out loud ...before anyone can say....."Don't talk like that!"



Monday, June 28, 2010

Right With God?

After I was officially diagnosed with terminal heart failure, I over heard one of my siblings say,   Now...“I needed to get right with God”. I wondered whether I was suppose to hear that comment, but it occurred to me, perhaps that was the intent.

When did choosing a different path make me not right with God?

Why is my life defined by what I resist or exclude?

Why can't I be defined by what I have embraced and included?

Is my goodness only measured by a religion and rules?

Arguments about religion have created more hate, murder and destruction than any other single reason on this earth. How can we argue hate and kill each other for a God that only wants love and peace for us? My heart will not let me be a part of the rules and religion that justifies hate in the name of God.

I have followed my heart,
honored my creative gifts and shared my blessings.
I have loved dearly and been loved.
I have received more blessings in this life than most people can imagine!
The many open and diverse ideas I embrace will define my life. Honesty, love, sharing, and creating. These are the gifts that have made my life worth living.
This is the measure of my life's purpose and goodness, I cannot be judged by any man's definition of a religions rules, I can only be judged by the divine loving God that I cocreate with

and I am extremely right with my God!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Embrace Who You Are

"Let Go of Who You Think You're Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are" -Brene' Brown

I embrace my
imperfect life
round body
wiry short hair
sick heart
dirty fingernails
messy house
need to cocoon
movie pop corn

Oh Ralph!

"What lies behind you and what lies in front of you, pales in comparison to what lies inside of you."~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Oh Ralph! If you only knew what is inside of me.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Let Go!

The further away I move from doctors, tests, clinics and medicines…the better I feel. The more I embrace the gifts that I have been given, the easier it is to let go and live freely!

Again...I remind myself and all that love me, that the best, strongest most amazing part of who I am- cannot be measured with rulers or medical tests. I am on this path for a reason.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The Enemy

Heart Failure is not an invading disease like a cancer that instigates war. I do not have any weapons like surgery, chemo or radiation. The enemy that occupies my body is my own heart.
What is this enemy asking me to let go of?
What is this enemy telling me to hold on to?

Tuesday, June 22, 2010


Some are by blood, some by marriage and others by spirit, all are wonderfully different, and each has a lesson to teach me.

Separated sister let go of me ages ago. We share a difference of opinion, a difference in religion, a difference in economics. We are polar opposites. Unable to honor each others chosen path or celebrate our differences, we simply choose not to speak.

Scared sisters are afraid for me. I do not need to fear anything because they have enough fear for all of us. They want to help me do it right, do it better, fix it, and undo all of the things I have and continue to do wrong.

Sacred sisters accept me just the way I am, with no expectations. They are on this journey with me. We laugh, cry, play and celebrate. Their lessons are the most treasured expressions of support, joy, forgiveness, creativity and life.

I am blessed to have all of these sisters to teach me.

Sister Dave Matthews Band


As I pay more attention to life, I begin to understand that some of the difficult situations we all get in to are created by the stories we tell ourselves. I have seen these stories be habitual explanations, dramatic exaggerations or total fabrications, but the one thing they all have in common is that the tellers sincerely believe their stories are true.

"I did this to myself, I deserve heart failure" has become part of my story.

Are people thinking "this is what happens if you do not follow the rules?"
Will my death be punishment for not following the rules?
Do I betray my goodness to tell a story to confirm medical explanations about my heart failure?
Is my story a habitual explanation, dramatic exaggeration or total fabrication?
Is my story true or just another story?

Monday, June 21, 2010


What is unfinished for me to give?
What is unfinished for me to heal?
What is unfinished for me to learn?
What is unfinished for me to experience?

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Opening My Heart to Fear

I have spent my whole life, identifying and fighting fear; I have even taught others how to do the same. Now, I am not certain that was a good thing. Fear threatened me with poverty, pain, separation and death. I picked up my armor went to war with each of these and more to protect my quality of life and passion for my art.

While I was fighting the fear enemies inside my own head, it occurred to me that fear has surrounded all of us and become a regular business technique. Doctors, hospitals, lawyers, and insurance petal the fear of pain, then provide us with a solution for a price. Banks, lenders and other creditors tout their answer for poverty for a fee. Religion is the master fear monger. It uses our biggest fear against us, death. It appears that religions and businesses have identified our fears, then wave them at us, and shamelessly sell us their solutions. Fear has always been powerful weapon, that functions beyond our intelligence and continues to make us feel inadequate, sick and poor. It controls our every move and makes us spend our energy, life and money to avoid it.

What would happen if instead fighting fear by running from it, paying for solutions or following fear's traditions “because that is what you are suppose to do”, I take fear into my heart and accept it as part of life. Instead of acting on fear or fighting it, I accept it, hold still and breathe through it.

Can I regain my passion for life if I open my heart to fear?

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Inspiration x7

I wish I could tell you what magic drew the seven of us together. Although we have used the excuse that we are working through the “Vein of Gold” book together, I can freely admit that our existence in each other’s lives goes much deeper. Maybe it is the simple fact that we gather once a week with creative honesty as our only agenda, or maybe it is just the simple act of being in the company of other artists and creatives.

I do not need to know why. There is no need to analyze it, only enjoy the inspiration that these seven women channel through my back porch and into my spirit every week.

Thank you!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Do what I do?

It appears that writing becomes the primary outlet for my negativity. Whew...feel bad for anyone that reads all this mess!

If you are here....
You may have to do what I do...
"Put on your big girl panties and deal with it!"
then giggle...

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

But They Are Starting to Bunch, OK

When I need to, I can rise to any occasion.
I put on my “I-can-do-anything face”
Jump in over my head,
And learn to swim on the way up

But don’t be fooled.
I struggle just as bad as anyone.
Underneath my fa├žade, I’m shaking in my boots.
So if I get a little testy with you,
Don’t’ take it personally…
And don’t tell me to
Put on my big-girl panties and deal with it.

I AM wearing my big-girl panties…
But they’re starting to bunch, OK!?

2003 Suzy Toronto

Monday, June 14, 2010

Sometimes the Answer is No

So, when I politely say no, it does not mean I do not appreciate you, it means I need to maintain what little control I have over my own life, right now.

Keeping my power means not falling into the make it better trap. Nobody can make this better; nobody can help me cope. It is on me and only me.

I am afraid that if I do not control what is done now, I will have no options when I get down the road. If I get into the habit of depending on others, I will be doing nothing more than making it worse for everyone around me and me. I have watched this scenario play out time and time again. I cannot allow fear of this disease, force me into to bad decisions now.

Friday, June 11, 2010

tEMpeR TAntRuMs

Not a full-blown foot stamping, screaming tantrums, but tantrums nonetheless.

I sat in the HF Clinic on Tuesday for well over an hour, no one comes and says we are running late, offers any explanation just has me sit and sit and sit. Feeling tired and sick, I left.

At the Wal-Mart Pharmacy….I deliver three new prescriptions and am told it will take 1 ½ hours. I returned to pick them up 1 ½ hours + the 20 more minutes I had to stand in line and they had only filled one of them. (They wanted me to come back later for the other two medicines) I asked for my prescription back and left here, too.

I do not know how I am going to fix this, but it felt good to take my power back. I am mad and have had enough! This is it; I am done!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

"I Will Not Die an Unlived Life"

I will not die an unlived life
I will not live in fear
of falling or catching fire.
I choose to inhabit my days,
to allow my living to open me,
to make me less afraid,
more accessible,
to loosen my heart
until it becomes a wing,
a torch, a promise.
I choose to risk my significance;
to live so that which came to me as seed
goes to the next as blossom
and that which came to me as blossom,
goes on as fruit.

Dawna Markova

How is this for turning anger into positive strength!
Love it!

Marvelous Snippets of My Old Life

There are wonderful little gifts of time that sneak into my life. Totally unexpected offerings that pop in and provide the marvelous opportunity to have little snippets of my old life back! For just a few exciting hours, there is enough energy to feel good, to play hard (well kind of), break rules and laugh out loud! Thank you! I am so grateful for these gifts.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Celebrating Meaning & Purpose

Heart disease seems to have a dynamic life of its own, completely independent of logic and my wishes. It operates like a spoiled or cranky young child that I have little control over. There are good days and bad for no obvious or predictable reason. There are periods of time I feel like I have it figured how to balance and optimize my energy levels and then as quickly as I find the formula for organizing and maintaining, it slips away for no reason.

I am beginning to question if my frustration stems from how blessed I have been in the past. Although I have certainly endured my share of life’s pain and grief, for the most part, it has been a wonderfully successful and happy life. If I did not have such a magnificent life, would these current life changes be so frustrating?

Instead of mourning my current life style losses, perhaps I should begin truly celebrating those things that I had. I do not fear dying anywhere near as much as I am afraid of not being able to celebrate the rest of my life with the meaning and purpose I have known.

I wonder if my friends and family understand this.