Posts Tagged ‘New York City’

The Plight of Angels

“All God’s angels come to us disguised.”  – James Russell Lowell

Love may not be tangible, but the objects that result from it are. I can look around me and see gifts from each person that loves me. They adorn my walls, my desk space, and take up residence in my record cabinet! Each object is a token of love from an irreplaceable human. However, not all of these seemingly  ordinary people  are human, some  of them are angels. Indeed  one of these creatures was actually my nurse while I was sedated in  the ICU. She prayed over me, sang the same songs, and today we share the same understanding.  Much like a palindrome, where there are words hidden within, and it’s understood in both directions, an invisible  river  of a s shared experience runs between us that ties us together. We knew nothing of each other before She  walked into my room, but that didn’t matter to Her, nonetheless She was going to put 200% of Herself into caring for me. Even now, I don’t believe I fully grasp the gravity of my situation in 2012. I have since learned that I was discovered on the floor gasping for breath in agony(a sign of a brain in the process of dying) and needed to be resuscitated. This was the state  from which a team of humans(and  many angels) were tasked  with bringing me back from. I was on the brink of death, and they weren’t going to let me completely fall! During the time that I spent in a coma, I wish I could  recall something, anything. However,  that time instead is one big blank in the  continuum of my timeline. While I lay unaware of my surroundings, the people that were there to observe felt the pain for me. Therefore,   they experienced it just as much(if not more) then I did!    Because of this lapse in consciousness, I’m discovering my own story  as if it is happening for the first time. It’s a rather weird  thing to have had such an earth shattering experience, but not to recall it.  As many of the details that I’ve missed, I certainly have not failed to recognize the key players in my  tale. Although, my story nearly ended in  total tragedy, now that I’m awake(and alive) to take over the narrative you can bet I’ll have a happy ending. Life is what you make of it!

-XOXO BLEU

What Dreams May Come

One belongs to New York instantly, one belongs to it as much in five minutes as in five years.”  -Tom Wolfe.

Most of the time, we can control  what drops into our subconscious at night, no  more than we can control the weather.  It has become apparent therefore, that my brain still lives in New York City while my body is about a 9 hour and 27 minute drive away. Because, on most nights you can find me and Mr Sandman still haunting the subway. While mentally I’m more than capable of masquerading through Manhattan, physically I have some serious work to do. It’s funny that even after a massive brain attack, such an assault cannot erase things like…. 1 Why you never get on an empty subway car (something awful is likely inside) 2  Navigating the  subway is not that scary( although it’s helpful to know the difference between express and local trains!) 3 It’s likely that locals will never agree on which  Borough is the best. And finally #4.  New York City may very well be the last bastion  for the American Dream. Why?  Quite simply because the other “kids,” I met there were chasing such impossible dreams as  getting my body to  transport itself into the middle of Times Square. However, you know what? They did so without giving one iota of attention, to the naysayers who said their dreams were  impossible. Oddly enough after the stroke happened to me I have more in common with them then I did before!  Even though  prior to the stroke I had been sharing the same physical space,  I wasn’t in the same headspace. According to the dictionary, the definition of headspace is the unfilled space left above the contents in a sealed container. I think it’s rather important to fill that space with things that lift you up rather then bring you down. If living in the city of dreams(and often hard knocks) taught me anything it’s that you are far  more capable then you think! Attitude definitely dictates your altitude. So, don’t let the words  or ill intentions of other people, crash your plane into the ground.   

Shoot for the moon!  
-XO-  BLEU

The Second Life is a Charm.

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“First, I have to thank God for giving me the gift that he did as well as a second chance for a better life.” –unknown.

I’m only 33, but I’ve lived two lifetimes. Currently I’m on my second. In the first one I was a fiercely independent twenty something living in New York City, keeping busy, and working in a promising professional career.  It was the beginning of my “adult,” existence. Living in a tiny room  that I rented in a nice apartment in the best city in the world. I had a 401k  under my belt, and nothing but big plans for the future in front of me. But of course, as they say  “ Life happens while your busy making other plans.”   And in my case, that saying proved to be true. Because I unexpectedly had a massive stroke and all those big plans suddenly fell through. In my second life I’m now a fiercely independent thirty something. Living in a pretty house in the woods, trying to figure things out, and life this time around has a lot less noise in it. However, despite my first go around I’m still making plans but they’re in a different vein. Rather then building on top of what I already have, I’m in the process of rebuilding.  I used to despair over the loss of my former plans, but slowly I have begun to realize that in the new plans I can do anything. It’s similar to the joy I felt in moving to a new neighborhood where nobody knew who I was. I could go to the grocery store under dressed and not run into a soul I knew. The freedom of that was rather nice. Except, this time around that new neighborhood is practically the whole world. After the stroke I was thrust into a new plane of existence. I had a past but it did not define me, in fact I could choose to omit the parts of my past I did not favor. After the stroke it was as if most people were meeting me for the first time. There were no expectations or preconceived notions. I could tell them what I wanted and in being able to choose the past I liked, that eventually also meant I could choose whatever future I wanted as well. The massive stroke cleared the game board of my life so I was now free to set it up again how I liked. This by no means has been easy. In fact it’s the most difficult thing I have ever had to do. I am just now beginning to see the freedom in what I previously thought was a death sentence. My future is still bright, and this one single event does not  hold true for every area of my life. Because, although life is short there is still plenty you can do with it. Therefore, aim to live yours to the fullest.

Life is a gift, savor the unwrapping of it!
bleu

20 Days.

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“It’s so fine and yet so terrible to stand in front of a blank canvas.”- Paul Cezanne.

It only took twenty days to upend twenty eight years of progress, now at the age of an adult I was starting over like a child. After waking from the coma(all twenty days of it) and being cleared for  a med flight to a rehabilitation hospital I had arrived. Not only was I physically back in the same location I had started from before I moved(to New York) but also mentally starting over. With no job, apartment, car, or social life, I was left with only one thing… rehabilitation. I found myself  so far down in the depths of life I had nowhere to go but up!  My view from the bottom was one of complete hopelessness and  loss. However, once I was farther along in my physical recovery(walking, eating, and communication skills) I began to see some light, and the burdens of the hospital were no more. I still had(and have) a mountain to climb but it’s much easier with the right tools and attitude. Once I began to shed the weight of piles of pills, a feeding tube, and the discomfort of a hospital bed I was free to breathe again. I quickly came to the realization that material belongings are meaningless, you  reap what you sow, and that life is but a blur. Once I regained my determination and strength, it was clear what I had to do. It may have taken but a moment to tear down the life I had built, but now I had a chance to repair it and even better this time! One can only be so lucky(or unlucky if you will. Now,  instead of hanging out  in my New York City apartment on a week day night after work, sometimes I hang out with people at a brain injury support group. Is it somewhere I ever expected to be? No, but I can still see the beauty in it. I have enjoyed having conversations with people that are usually invisible in mainstream society and very likely by me too prior to the stroke. Except that I now I see them.  It’s not a place I ever wanted(or expected) to be, but I’m going to make the best of it. Because rather then dwell on the past or get stuck, sometimes we just need to tell ourselves “Let’s just get on with it!”   Do I suppose I am an injured little bird stuck in  my circumstances? No, because in making the decision to get on with it I have found the hope  to fly again.

unclip your wings,

bleu

Fervor.

07-09-2011 Tracey

“In every day, there are 1,440 minutes. That means we have 1,440 daily opportunities to make a positive impact.” -Les Brown.

Just as the ebb and flow of a river is changed when a large boulder is dropped into it, so are our lives when we encounter the large impact of another human being.  Ever since the ebb and flow of my life was radically impacted I’ve been contemplating the effects  that other people have on the course of our lives.  Are we  predestined as if by fate and have everything chosen for us? -or- are we but an energetic pinball bouncing off of different circumstances in an infinite universe? Perhaps it is a combination of the two. However, neither of these take into account the random impact that  others can have on us. Some people will change your direction while others help spur us forward, and yet some will stop us in our tracks. While the impact from each of these is different they are all  equally helpful. Why?  Because,  each one has brought you to where you are now  or taught you a lesson in some way. Some of these human boulders are extremely helpful while others feel extremely unhelpful(at least at the time) but  each one can teach us  a valuable lesson. Besides the rivers of life being changed due to a boulder, we can also become stuck as if a dam was built to stop us. How does one get around a dam when it happens? Simple, you must find a way to open it and let the river flow again.  Even rivers start with  a small drip(headwaters) until they form a puddle which  will begin to run down a slope in a trickle and eventually  become a  river. Although  very small, this is where it all begins.  Nature itself has  shown us that big  things can originate from just  a small  action. As with a river even if you’re going downhill, by beginning with a small (positive)action that accumulates into many, you too can become a mighty rushing river!

keep dripping!

bleu

The Wall

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“Having hit a wall, the next logical step is not to bang our heads against it.”- Stephen Harper.

Whether the wall is a physical one(visible) or an emotional one(invisible) we all are facing a wall of some kind. These walls separate us from our goals, desires, forward movement, and even other people. It is interesting to note that the  non-physical can literally stop us in our tracks. Among the lies we tell ourselves  are fear and worry. These two things have an especially good knack for stopping us from what we really want. Because of these negative emotions and their mind games we  tend to lose the ability to move in  a forward direction. Beyond  this wall is a more positive self image that will spurn us upward and onward! To change  the circumstance, we need to change our self image. The  trifecta of anger, complaints, and ungratefulness is a sure road to failure. It is  with a positive self image and thankfulness that we’ll find the keys to success. However, this is more then just positive thinking, we literally must change our self image in order to succeed. This is not an easy feat, especially when you’re caught in the midst of circumstances you hate. The trick is, by finding things you are grateful for in  the middle of  life’s storms, they will hold less power over you and  their effects won’t be so devastating. This in turn will open up an in road beyond the wall that you face.  By recognizing your strength rather then weakness, the good over the bad, and taking a reflective moment each day to see these things, you’ll be well on your way beyond the wall that is stopping you. Be the victor rather then  the victim, and the healed rather then the sick!

see your way through it!

bleu