Tag Archives: light

Peace for my friend

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peaceThinking of my friend, Diane. Wishing you peace.

May you be, feel, experience all that’s happening and find somewhere in all of the fear, chaos, and unknowing, a sense of peace.

I hope you can feel the light and healing energy and abundant love that I am sending to you. May it wash over you like a bath and bring you comfort.

A place to be free

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Carol over at Radiating Blossom – Flowers and Words  inspired today’s post  with We are all longing. The quote she shared (below) made me realize how cancer led me to find nd and make communities that give me strength and find and create places where I come home just as I am. I think of my family, my girlfriends, my survivor yoga group…I sit in gratitude that I have felt like I’ve come home so many times. That I have a circles that heal, where I am free.

“We are all longing to go home to some place we have never been — a place half-remembered and half-envisioned we can only catch glimpses of from time to time.  Community.  Somewhere, there are people to whom we can speak with passion without having the words catch in our throats.  Somewhere a circle of hands will open to receive us, eyes will light up as we enter, voices will celebrate with us whenever we come into our own power.  Community means strength that joins our strength to do the work that needs to be done.  Arms to hold us when we falter.  A circle of healing.  A circle of friends.  Someplace where we can be free.” ~ Starhawk

 

Healing Light

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healing light

Yesterday I learned that one of my breast cancer survivor friends was diagnosed with colon cancer. I am so glad she chose to share this news with our yoga group before our practice.  Our sanctuary filled with healing light. We offered our hearts to our friend, and she received.

Her diagnosis is fresh, having had her colonoscopy a week ago yesterday. She’ll be having surgery this coming Wednesday. The good news is they found the cancer early enough that they can remove the cancerous section – no colostomy.

We all dedicated our practice to her. This poem is an attempt to capture the beautiful moment that Theresa, our yoga instructor, helped us create with her guided healing imagery.

We Are Light
By Vicki L. Flaherty

We are light
Pure and healing light
Here to hold you
To give you strength
To offer our love for you

We press our palms together
Rest the edges of our bonded thumbs against our hearts
Our fingers spread like rays of golden sunshine
Releasing healing power from deep within, out into the room
For you

Our energy floats gracefully to the center 
Each of our spirits moving toward the other
Melding into a single source of powerful light 
Encircling you in radiant illuminating light

Take our pure and healing light
Let it hold you
Let it give you strength
Accept our love

I’ve been transported to that place of vulnerability that comes with such a diagnosis, that place where reaching for hope is strength, where the ability to trust is a gift, where the simplest act of love brings incredible contentment.   I’m reminded of what’s important in life – my family, my friends, my health, bringing joy into the world, filling space with beauty and gratitude, embracing all the possibilities that open in front of me.

A letter to my friend  

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courtesy of awaykening.net

courtesy of awaykening.net

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I know you can’t see it. Not now, when so many things block it from view. But it is there. Oh, yes, it is definitely there inside of you. It’s a light. I bright and beautiful light.

Right now, your soul seems to be screaming, covered in fear. It wants out of the darkness. And it will find its way out. Oh, yes, it will definitely find its way to the light. And you will find yourself shining.

May you see that the fuzziness of your thoughts is protecting you. That uncomfortable softness will give way to clarity. Oh, yes, clarity will find its way to you. And, when it does, you will radiate light.

May you soon be in a place where you wonder why it ever felt dark and heavy. May your vulnerability now be the source of infinite strength.

I see your light, my friend. It is glowing inside of you. It is filled with hope. It sees possibility. It believes in life. Life without cancer. Life without fear. With each passing day may a layer of darkness peel away so your radiance reaches the world in all its beautiful power.

My heart is holding you in love,

Namaste.

Vicki

Sisters of Hope Radiating Light

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circle of light

 

Today my heart is holding Michelle, the beautiful young woman whose spirit has graced our yoga group with her radiant light, occasionally leading us in our Monday evening practice. Diagnosed before the holidays with thyroid cancer, she is having surgery today, perhaps at this very moment. This poem came flowing this morning as I sent her intentions for healing and health.

Sisters of Hope Radiating Light
By Vicki L. Flaherty

Today she is one of us.
She glows here on the other side of the room.
The wise one who usually leads from the front.

She is resilient, rooted and radiant –
youthful and vibrantly alive.
Her every movement a graceful declaration of life.

We are sisters of hope.
We form a circle around her.
Intentions of every color sit side-by-side,
as we hold her within the deepest part of our being.
Each posture we offer as a gift of strength.

Together we bathe in the calming waters of our sanctuary.
Like flowers leaning into the wind, we move in unison –
our love woven into every breath in,
peace permeating through every muscle.
Each breath we breathe together
And the hope that fills our hearts
create a powerful healing energy
radiating light.

Soul touching

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courtesy of www.dreamstime.com

dreamstime.com

I introduced you to my young survivor friend earlier this year in Healing Waters and I can’t seem to let go of her. I vowed back in June that I would be here for her, not at all clear what that might look like.  She finishes her 12th course of chemotherapy on Monday (good news – it is working and has significantly shrunk the tumors). She has many difficult decisions ahead – so much information, so many uncertainties, such incredibly difficult choices. She’s a brilliant biologist and relies on data and logic to guide her decisions. The ground is so slippery for her now, given the overwhelming emotions and strong medication swimming in her system.

We met again yesterday, in a quiet lounge at our hospital. Her sister sat beside her, an anchor in the storm. (She came from their home country a couple of months ago on a 6-month visa.) My friend’s heart poured out as she shared her questions, her confusion, fears, and hopes. I shared my truths with her, still leaving so many questions unanswered. Through moments of tears, laughter, silence, sharing and opening, we became as one. Our souls danced together. I could almost grab the healing energy inside our circle of light. I barely know them and I know everything about them.

We are in a private room in the plastic surgery department. I sat in the patient chair. Last time I sat here I was confused and afraid, carrying so many questions. But, today is different. I feel strong and clear.

My friend and her sister sit in chairs across from me. I look deeply into their eyes. I smile gently, holding on to trust, trust that what I am about to do will be comforting and helpful, not scary and add to the confusion and feelings of overwhelm.

Slowly, still looking into my friend’s eyes, I begin to unbutton my sweater. I am completely focused on her as I uncover my right breast for her to see. I breathe again when I see a soft sweet smile rise to her tender face. I sense she finds comfort in what she sees. I move the other side of my sweater so she can see how the reconstructed side compares. We acknowledge the imperfection together. I invite her to touch my reconstructed breast, to see how the silicone feels when it’s been implanted. She gently compares my breasts. 

We continue to sit together for several minutes, me looking into their eyes, searching for the hope I want to give them. They appreciatively looking into mine, their hearts overflowing with gratitude for this tender moment together. Our circle of light radiates as I button my sweater.

This room will never be the same. We will never be the same.

The Light

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Photo by SGAngel as featured on the 9/15/13 Presents of Presence post

Photo by SGAngel as featured on the 9/15/13 Presents of Presence post

I wrote the poem in this post for my husband. Now, as I reflect upon it, I can see how it might have taken root in my own need to hear the message. I am not sure why seeing, and believing, in our own light is so difficult. As my friend over at The Presents of Presence likes to say: SHINE ON!

The Light
By Vicki L. Flaherty

There is a light
An amazing and powerful light
That shines in daylight and darkness

The energy impacts with its mere presence
And dazzlingly so when its flame is full

Its glow reaches into the shadows
To illuminate and inspire
Filling space and time with warmth

To catch a spark, all it needs is
Belief in its inherent strength
Faith that its sole purpose is to shine

And most of all
A desire to glow brightly

The light is you

Dancing like the tide

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San Agustinillo, Oaxaca, Mexico

San Agustinillo, Oaxaca, Mexico

I wrote the piece below in my journal last spring. It seemed to resonate today. Something about a bright spring day filled with possibility that has me stretching toward the light. My heart keeps singing and I keep dancing. I feel stronger, fuller, more whole these days – well, most of the time. Small, vulnerable, empty, broken moments arise. I breathe into them, through them, and they pass. My emotions move like the tide. And as the waves rush to the shore and gravity pulls them back out again, I realize that I am not this OR that. I am both this and that.

Dancing (journal, spring 2012)

I am stading tall.
I reach for the sky.
My feet are solid on the ground.
My heart is open.
My body flows in movement.
I am grace.
Here I dance.
My very own dance.
To my very own music.
I sway.
I stand still.
I am small.
I am big.
I am vulnerable.
I am strong.
I am nothing.
I am everything.
I am empty.
I am full.
I am broken.
I am whole.

© Vicki Flaherty, 2013

Into the light

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photo courtesy of thesuperherosofservice.blogspot.com

photo courtesy of thesuperherosofservice.blogspot.com

Light is playing with me today. I posted how delicious it is over at my This Abundantly Delicious Life blog in a post called Sunbeams. Light spoke to me again this morning when I was preparing to send one of my books to a new survivor friend. As I was rummaging through my ‘book box’ to assemble a package for her, I came across a poem I wrote about a year ago called Into The Light.

Into the Light was the first poem that I wrote ‘on demand’. A survivor friend of mine who was coordinating our local Johnson County Relay for Life asked if I would write a poem for the first annual Caregiver Ceremony that was being hosted as part of the 20th anniversary festivities at the Relay. While I was honored, I wasn’t sure I could do it. After all, the poetry that my friend loved was inspired by my own experience with cancer. It flowed out of me like a river of healing as a way for me to care for myself. Could I experience the same sense of flow by giving my heart over to caring for all the people who care for us survivors?

The answer came as soon as I got in the car after the request. It started with one little word bubbling up. The one invited others. I could feel the creative energy filling me. I remember opening the glove box and getting out paper and pen so I could capture what was coming. The flood gates opened – of course I could fulfill this beautiful request. As the ideas continued to flow in the week that followed, I wrote them all down. After some ‘percolating’time, I type the words into my computer and the creative process continued. The pieces started coming together beautifully. I was amazed.

Today’s post is dedicated to caregivers everywhere who give their hearts and talent.

Into the Light
By Vicki L. Flaherty

When a diagnosis spins our world out of control,
You are the balance that steadies us from the fall.

When we wait impatiently for answers to questions we don’t want to ask,
Your soothing voice calms and reassures us.

When decisions swirl around us as if we are drowning,
You are the air at the surface that helps us breathe.

When we are afraid and uncertain about what’s next,
You are the fortress protecting us from the storms ahead.

When the noise in our heads murmurs incessantly,
You are the quiet sanctuary where we find peace.

When we feel ourselves melting away,
You are the earth angels with outstretched arms holding us.

When the pain in our weary, tired bodies seems never ending,
You are the medicine that soothes our aches.

When we don’t have the strength to take another step,
You are the wind at our backs guiding us gently forward.

When the emotional wreckage is more than we can sift through,
You are the helping hand sweeping away our grief.  

When life feels like a scorching desert wasteland,
You are the oasis filling our souls with nourishing waters.

When our worries fall like a heavy rain,
You are the shelter protecting us from the damp and cold.

When we are lost with our destination unknown,
You are the home from where we find our way.

You are our husbands, our wives, our partners
You are our mothers and fathers, our grandparents
You are our sisters and brothers, our daughters and sons
You are our aunts and uncles, our nieces and nephews, our cousins
You are the family who hears our feelings hidden under the surface.

You are our friends,
You are our colleagues,
You are our spiritual guides,
You are the community who sees through the strength we wear like armor.

You are our doctors, our nurses,
You are our pharmacists, our therapists,
You are our healers and our providers
You fill the hospitals and clinics with wisdom and comfort for our pain.

 
You are the lights, like a million stars in the sky,
guiding us as we walk through the darkest hours of night.

You are the blanket that wraps us when we awaken from the dream,
warming us to the possibility of the sun rising and golden light.

© Vicki Flaherty, 2012