Rescued

Today I am sore, I cannot lift my arms above my shoulders, my hands are cramped and wrists painful to move. I have taken dozens of slivers out of my fingers and finally washed the dirt, moss and leaves from my hair.

I feel as triumphant and proud as I did defeated and broken only 24 hours ago.

I felt all the feels and emotions yesterday, last night as I finally dozed from exhaustion of mind and body.

My 13 year old son was given a beautiful tort kitten for his 12th birthday, something he longed for and babied upon receiving.

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kitten  This was her as a kitten, smaller than our 7lbs chihuahua. He named her fireball because she has streaks of lightning along her face and a white tip at the end of her tail that looks like a flashlight.

After she was spayed, got all her shots and after she turned 1 we started letting her out for short periods of time, never going to far from our front or back yards and always coming back.  Until yesterday, well the night before now.  I had not seen her all day and had a funny feeling about it but hoped she’d return by nightfall. my son went out looking for her 3x before going to bed that night and I knew something was wrong. I prayed we didn’t find her hit by a car the next day or worse eaten by coyotes.

best biddys  George, our chihuahua her best friend also knew something was wrong, she was restless and paced the house seemingly barking at the wind.

The next morning (yesterday)  still no fireball, my son opened the door to call her name all night long, I even walked out back at 2am hoping she would be there. I drove them to school and promised I would go look for her, I wanted to go to the gym, Christmas break just ended but I followed my gut which said to go look. I walked less than 5 minutes calling her name when she heard me and started to meow the loudest cry I had ever heard, in fact that cry would draw many neighbors and spectators through out my ordeal to rescue her, it was that loud. I followed the cry to a revine by our house, I looked down and new to go in there I needed supplies. I ran home, put jeans on top of my yoga pants, pulled on my hunter boots grabbed the biggest jacket, some gloves and a hat because it was raining pretty hard. This is where I had to navigate through to find her following her cry. I got to the tree, it was surrounded by prickly bushes, out I went to run back home to get clippers and a blanket.

. the path

I went through so many emotions in that first hour of finding her. As I hacked away at the prickle bushes making an entrance to the base of the tree, getting caught up in my haste and needing to constantly untangle myself, my jacket. I felt relief at finding her, joy, she was okay, then dread when I saw how high up she was, determination to rescue my babies baby, defeat when I couldn’t climb the tree. Hopelessness after 3 hours of cutting brush away and listening to her sad long meow. Worry, was she hurt, fear, will she die up there, what will I tell my son. I called the fire department, they dont help for this I was told. I called the city because it was a protected ravine habitat that you were not suppose to enter, they also were not going to help but recommended a tree service to  help. I called animal protection, posted on facebook, someone please help! no one could. I was told to put white blankets at the base for her to see, I was told wave treats to coax her down, she was at least 40 to 50 feet in the air from under the tree you could not see her but needed to stand at a distance to see her. Way up in this evergreen!

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I felt hopeless, no one was going to help me, I couldn’t climb the tree, I didn’t know what to do. I felt lost. Not to mention cold and wet, I had gone through 3 pairs of pants and 5 pairs of gloves by now. My hat and hair soaked through.

I just kept talking to her, asking her to please come down, I cursed the bushes that were stabbing me with their tiny knives, I begged her to come down, I cried as I hacked away, here is my clearing job, I am pretty proud of it though I am painfully paying for it today.

the clearing

 

I was giving up hope, I was waiting for the tree services people to call me back, I had learned from one of the people passing by that the night before she saw a couple of young coyotes on the path, they most likely chased her up the tree. Now I was worried she was injured too. I left my ladder, my clippers and blankets and went back home feeling defeated, willing to pay someone to get her down, though I had no idea how they would. The last time I went back to check on her to plead with her to try to come down, another person stopped and said she heard the cat and came to see and saw me, she asked if it was my cat, I said yes, I said no one will help me and that I was waiting for tree people to call. I turned and she was gone.

I went back home and waited, I stared at the wall worrying, what to do and finally they (the tree services people) called, the man nonchalantly saying -get your cat yet? I felt so dismissed, it’s not just a cat, she’s not even 2! she is my first born sons precious kitty. She was chased by coyotes 40 feet up a tree in a ravine and was up there all night in the wind and rain. Why did no one care! He said he could send someone in a few hours, I begged sooner, he said it was going to cost, I said fine whatever. I was about to leave for the bank when a knock at my door. Standing there was the last women I saw looking at me from when I was in the ravine that asked if I was ok, she said I have your cat. I was in shock, for real, I hugged her and said you do!? how? she said she loves cats, she climbed the tree and got her, she’s in her truck. I walked to her truck down the street and there was fireball, wet and scraggly. She said she was working in the area and heard the cat and saw me struggling. She finished her job and came to help, I wasn’t there so she tried and successfully climbed the tree. I still don’t know how, I couldn’t make it half way, I am a very fit person. I work out 6 days a week, I’ve done tough mudder, rugged maniac, many adventure races, 10ks you name it. If I couldn’t climb it how did she?

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I felt so grateful!! Someone helped me rescue our cat, a part of our family that we would have been devastated to lose.

I had felt so many things in the span of 5 hours, exhaustion, pain, physical struggles and mentally drained. And today I am very sore but filled with relief and gratitude.

As I relive the moments of joy, defeat, stress, fear, worry, determination and helplessness, I feel so grateful to this women that helped me. I feel proud for having experienced all those emotions and kept going. I was scared but I wasn’t going to quit.

What a day! One I will never ever forget. And another reason my goal in life is to help others the way this angel/stranger helped me.

the tree

This is her, cold, wet, obviously shaken up by her adventure, she hasn’t meowed in the 24hrs since she’s been home, I think she did enough for 5 hours straight when I tried to rescue her.

My husband said I can’t believe you found her, like a mother, he joked. I said I felt like I was rescuing a baby and I kinda was, it was my sons baby and I knew he would have been devastated to lose her. He knows grief, he lost his sister when he was 6, his hamster when he was 9, not to mention he was just starting with the unmanageable teenage emotions coming up to his 14th birthday. I wanted to protect him from feeling that pain again and I was going to get his cat back. Miraculously an angel helped me after I felt so defeated, there she was with his cat.

A parent will do anything for her kids.

A good person will always help.

 

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Thanks for reading,

Sheri

 

Capture your Grief; Purpose & Essence

 

 

Day 2 Purpose:

What is our purpose here on earth? A question we all ponder and struggle with a many moments in life. As a child we believe our purpose is to play, if we are lucky. As a teenager we believe we are entitled to all we want and though our purpose is to learn and manage our ever changing bodies and minds. As a young adult, we may begin to question our purpose, the things we have been told and taught until now. The real world may be telling us something different, our purpose to understand it all as it unravels. As an adult, I believe our purpose changes multiple times throughout our lives, our years, our weeks even. When a stressful event unfolds that we cannot control, job loss, a break up or divorce, death of a parent, sibling or child or pet. All that we have learned or understood until that point gets thrown out the window, the many facets of grief that these grand changes bring to our lives cause us to re think our purpose, to change our path, our onward trajectory. What is our purpose, I think for every single human it is different but for all we do have some common purposes. To help each other out, to raise up those below. To be kind, to love.  I tell my kids often to help not to hurt. That I believe is a main purpose of human kind. But I only came to that point of view through years of hurt, so I suppose it is all relative to our own personal growth; our purpose.

 

Day 3 Essence:

The essence of being, a state of mind and thought of one self or character. A descriptive term to which how one feels toward something, a feature or quality of a solid or spiritual piece. In essence, I feel like her death taught me so much but in reality it was the pain of losing her that opened my eyes to what I could not see before. The reality that is life. In essence a young naïve mind is protected from the truth until it ventures out and gets hurt or betrayed. In essence they appear to care but their actions say otherwise.

es·sence
noun: essence
  1. the intrinsic nature or indispensable quality of something, especially something abstract, that determines its character.
    • Philosophy
      a property or group of properties of something without which it would not exist or be what it is.
    • an extract or concentrate obtained from a particular plant or other matter and used for flavoring or scent.
    synonyms: quintessence, soul, spirit, nature; core, heart, crux, nucleus, substance; principle, fundamental quality, sum and substance, warp and woof, reality, actuality;
    Thank you for Reading,

     

    Sheri

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Capture you Grief

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Writing Challenge Day 1: Sunrise

My Sunrise

Chemicals cross the sky causing the sunrise, we feel unattainable glory at the beauty it beholds. Every Sunrise is a new beginning, a fresh start, another chance. Some yearn for it while others despise it. Those who want to go back to re-live a memory, those that cannot let go, the wounds too raw. Every new sunrise a defeat a reminder that yesterday is done. There is no way back. You have no choice but to keep moving forward, to hopefully realize you still get to see the sunrise.

 

Thanks for reading,

Namaste,

Sheri

The never ending mountain

 

Grief; ultimately the hike of your lifetime, a steep decent into the muddy, dark mess that sticks to your boots pulling you into its sinking sludge. Sometimes a light stroll through the memories, a rainbow follows a storm and you appreciate the change. Out of nowhere a harsh incline appears as if out of nothing it feels as though you are not going anywhere but if you look back the reflection is faint. You have come further than you realise, one foot in front of the other, drag, pull, skip, jump but don’t stop. You must keep climbing. Moving forward into the hard fog for it will lift at the slighest moment to show you new beauty. The colors around you are constantly changing, the landscape never the same. New fears appear as past loss is accepted but that is the way we grow. We learn to accept, we challenge our normal, feel the hurt and keep climbing.

 

 

Sometimes the smallest things can seem like a huge hurdle to get over, take a breath, have a moment for yourself and start again.

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Share your thoughts.

 

Thanks for reading

Namste

Sheri

Why God is not a part of my Grief

 

Nature has been a place of solace for me. Walking amongst the trees, staring at clouds, sunset or sunrise. Feeling the rain on my face. But there are those that maybe have not experienced a great loss and do not see that you find comfort in simpler things perhaps over words.

“They’re with God now”, “God needed another angel”, “it is Gods plan”, “Don’t be sad they are with God”, “it is not meant to be”, “Time heals”, “God loved them more”

Just a few things that people who blindly follow religion or a  church might say, to those who do not, may not or will not understand. Why you would say something so unnecessary or hurtful and confusing.

Do you know my faith? Or have you assumed I am Christian. Do you so boldly state what you believe and that you know my child, parent, sibling, friend is actually with God (your God?),  or summoned by them,  gone because of them… Perhaps a question of how are you may be better. Or offering to walk alongside in silence.

If one accepts it is Gods plan, then there is the following questions that I have witnessed grievers deal with- Why? why would God do this? Why does God cause suffering? If God cared or loved me he wouldn’t have done this! Many people question their faith after a trauma, tragic death or unexpected loss.

I believe in science but I would never say to a women that suffered a miscarriage the scientific reason that perhaps their body could not carry a fetus to term, just as I would not say it was not meant to be, or God had a different plan.

By putting my thoughts, beliefs or opinions on someone elses grief that takes away their right to how they  feel, I am imposing myself and ignoring them. Not allowing someone to feel their own process of grief or thoughts and reasons why is a disservice to their journey.

Many times, at funerals a pastor or minister will say ” do not grieve, do not be sad” immediately taking away the right of the griever with the excuse that God will made this so and therefore you need not “suffer in grief”.  But many know that to move through your grief and loss you MUST feel it. Allow it to overtake you when it comes. It is a process with no timeline. I ran into the women that officiated my daughters funeral, she was officiating my Grandmothers funeral a few months later. She said after a very insincere hello, that I must be doing better because well 4 months had passed since my daughters death and that is double the time she lived. I could tell she was proud of herself for this “revelation” to me, as though I had not considered every possible equation as to the months I carried her, the months she lived, the time that has passed since she is gone. I felt she thought she was comforting me with those words and all I felt was anger. How dare you tell me how I should feel. That because her life was short my grief must be too?

I have just learned a childhood friend has died, he was only 39.  His mothers funeral was the first I had ever been to, she died of a brain hemorrhage when we were kids. He and his sisters had a much harder life, I assume, after that loss,(we moved away a couple years later).  I have thought of them often, how they the ages of 8, 10 and 12,  how they must have felt losing the one constant in their life, entering their teen years and young adulthood without her comfort and guidance. Now he has passed, some will say he is back with her, I think that is what all want to hope for. But no one really knows, so I will just say to his dad and sisters, I am sorry. I am sorry he is gone. Sibling loss they say can be as hard as losing a child.  I look at my boys, they are best friends, each others first friend, comrade, confidante. They have a bond that will only be broken with death.

Rest In Peace Curtis Hall

 

Thanks for reading,

Namaste

Sheri

 

What 37 years on earth has taught me!

37th bday  The morning of my 37th birthday. October 2 2017

I’ve always struggled with sleep, as a child I remember making up games in my mind to make myself fall asleep, I would sneak into my parents room and sleep on the floor, as a teen I would read until I passed out. So no surprise on this day – October 2nd – my 37th b-day I was awake at dawn. I tossed and turned desperate to fall back asleep and finally got up to enjoy the quiet of the morning before the chaos began. I poured my coffee and sat down to watch the news.

Well you know by now what I saw. My heart broke, I was in shock, not again. My husband and I have been to LV a least a dozen times in the last decade, we always are on the strip or at a concert or show. Had we been there for my b-day, which was considered, we would have been at the country music festival (we love country music) were this heinous act of  gun violence occurred. We decided not to go because we are going to be running in the Rock and Roll Marathon in LV in November, which is celebrated at the end by a concert. I am not sure we will attend. But we should not let fear win right? Except that in the USA  this year there have been 273 mass shootings (a mass shooting is defined as 4 or more people being killed) last year there was 483! read more in the link below.

http://www.abc15.com/news/data/mass-shootings-in-the-u-s-over-270-mass-shootings-have-occurred-in-2017

So is it safe to travel to the US? We recently- last spring- went to Disney land for the first time, my kids leading up to it did not want to go and I could not understand. The answer came after much interrogation, they did not want to be killed, I said why would you think that? they said everyone has guns in America. Hmmm, yes they have a point. I explained as best I could that there are police everywhere and most places have measures to prevent people bring guns in, although yes there were metal detectors at Disney land most places unfortunately allow guns in the United States, something not legal in Canada. I understood their fear. It is undeniable that America has a gun problem and the debate was proven to be over when 20 babies were killed by an automatic riffle at Sandy Hook 5 years ago and nothing was changed or fixed about their lax or non existent gun laws. It is unfortunate that a country as big and powerful as the USA is more obsessed with their sick gun culture and ‘right to bear arms’ than the right to healthcare or to walk safely in their country without the threat of gun violence.

http://www.irishtimes.com/news/world/us/if-sandy-hook-didn-t-change-america-s-gun-laws-nothing-will-1.2454880

My kids woke up, I turned off the news and wiped my tears away. They came down the stairs singing happy b-day. Bitter sweet. I hugged them and we started our morning.

Houston Trail

Something I have learned after 37 years…

Whenever I have felt overwhelmed by grief, tragedy and heart ache I need to go outside. Walk amongst the trees in the forest and breathe.

I’ve learned that life gets so much more complex as we age, as people die around us the undeniable reality of our obvious and eventual demise can feel overwhelming

Death also gets ignored by many. Some rush through life trying to be successful, creating a fortune, for what? To be buried in a gold casket? I truly admire the likes of Bill and Melinda Gates that spend their fortune helping others, eradicating polio in Africa- a pretty noble thing to spend your time and money on in your retirement years. Or Oprah Winfrey opening a school for girls in Africa, or Facebook founder Mark Zukerburg donating 100 million to education in the US.

I’ve learned that flashy things are just that things. Things that end up in the landfill.

I’ve learned that I’d rather have enough than a feast.

I’ve learned that real people, honest people, even though honesty can be a hurtful or a hard thing to swallow at times, is much better than the fake people.

I’ve learned that no matter how many push ups or chest presses you do, your armpits and under arms will still get flabby ( and so will your knees- no amount of running will stop that ).

I’ve learned that after 35 you finally stop being so harsh on your body.

I’ve learned to appreciate when it’s quiet.

I’ve learned not to take things for granted. Even when your tired and frustrated, a tug at your sleeve for a hug, or an I love you with a smile can be amazing.

I’ve learned education can change perspective and direction.

I’ve learned that you’re never to old to make mistakes and to keep learning.

I’ve learned that kids are pretty darn smart and much more resilient and accepting than adults.

I’ve learned it is ok to let people judge you, as I have learned it really does not matter what they think. Most do not know you well enough anyway.

I’ve learned no matter how hard you give to others they wont assume they need to give back until you ask.

I’ve learned it is ok to say no.

I’ve learned it is ok to yell and get angry, and it is also ok to say sorry and accept responsibility.

I’ve learned that exercise can do more than just keep your body healthy, but your mind too.

I’ve learned too that there are more ignorant people in the world than I’d hoped as a younger person.

I’ve learned we only get one life and don’t know what comes next, so try your best to cherish it and that does not mean be happy all the time.

I’ve learned that music and dance can heal and rejuvenate the soul, but also trick the mind into feeling young again.

So, I went with my BFF to see the amazing singer, dancer, performer, the person I saw at age 10 at the first concert I had ever attended. We went to see Janet Jackson and danced and sang the night away, and I hadn’t  felt that good,  in a long time.

 

 

 

 

Thanks for reading,

Namaste,

Sheri

Capture your Grief Poetry final 5

Express

Your broken heart in a picture; words on a card

Thoughts on a page; heart on your sleeve

Tears on you pillow;  wind in your hair

Expression is always there

Wisdom

From experience it grows inside

For us to find when we lie

Down to reflect of past wins or losses

Wisdom comes from within

Welcome what it has taught us

Some find it hard to see but we need to feel inside

for it to reach us; not to hide

Reflect

The stranger in the window; you have forgotten who it is

Think back to a time when it looked familiar

Who is that face staring back at you

Time changes the reflection of ourselves

The passing of time cause us to reflect

As we reflect on the reflection in the window

Intention

What is the intention; we often ask

Is it pure, honest, real

Do we trust or question ones intention

Research, calculate its truth

To whom does the best intention help

You or me

Or no one

Our intentions can be misinterpreted, misread or misunderstood

Is it why we keep our deepest intentions private?

Sunset

Peace, color, thought

Night, leaving, end

Dark, moon, rise

Red, orange, yellow turn to black

Happy to sad; here to gone

Quiet

Goodbye sun

Thank you for Reading,

Namaste. Sheri

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Capture your grief poetry part 4

Relationship

Change over time; come and go

Stuck in your mind of what is no more

New and exciting or old but well tended

Some more important than others

Others harder to deal with than some

Relationships lost; relationships found

Unknown time for all to become unbound

By Sheri Hall

 

Self care

Like a bouquet of flowers purchased for oneself

A loud concert to escape your thoughts

A movie, a walk, a glass of wine

Everyone has a journey to ease their own mind

Self care as unique as our grief

What you need I may not

What I want you don’t get

Self often gets ignored or no credit

But we know and some do get it

By Sheri Hall

Inspiration

Comes in waves

Do we get up today?

Hides in the closet

Should we go find it?

Behind a tree lost in the forest

Sometimes we have to search for it

But it is always there; in many forms

For those with eyes to see; ears to hear

By Sheri Hall

Forgiveness

Forgiveness of one self

Important to stop the torture

Forgiveness of others

A necessary move to make

Forgiveness of the unknown, the guilt, the regret

A much harder step

To forgive is to move forward

A lesson

In letting go

By Sheri Hall

Mother Earth

Who is she; is she real or a figment of our imagination

Does she guide us; care for us or we her

Are we misguided in her protection

Do we realize our destruction

There is no going back, to simpler times

Greed has taken over; she is in chains

Is it too late to save her

By Sheri Hall

Healing Ritual

Lighting a candle on a day; as a way to remember

Lighting a candle everyday; to feel their presence

The flickering light; we imagine their dance

The wicker going out a symbol of our loss

A thousands candles lit; a hundred memories lived

Through the light of the dancing wick

Folding a tiny blanket

over and over

Staring at a photo to try to remember

Lighting their candle you wish could stay lit forever

Rituals can feel healing

Rituals can be soothing

Rituals can become routines

Secrets they then become

 Wanting not to explain why done

By Sheri Hall

f0c47d1320fb2fe769d047d5fc34df45Up next # 27-31

Thank you for reading.

Namaste,

Sheri

 

 

 

Capture your Grief Poetry

Retreat

Retreat within yourself to feel the hardest pain

Retreat to a sacred space to feel a spirits cosmic embrace

Retreat to a deserted island and escape the harsh reality

Retreat to your bed where you feel safe

Retreat if you can to heal in your own space

By Sheri Hall

Explore

Thoughts, walks, smiles

Words, books, cries

Places, memories, lanes

Voices, touch, hurts

Life, dreams, death

Explore all before it ends

By Sheri Hall

 

Gratitude

Gratefulness in pictures; gratitude for taking

Gratefulness in love; gratitude for not breaking

Gratefulness in silence; thoughts can be so loud

Gratefulness in time; having been spent well

Gratefulness for you; lessons never ending

By Sheri Hall

 

Give

Given freely; taken lightly

Touched gently; moved sweetly

Kissed softly; loved greatly

By Sheri Hall

 

Breathe

To Survive,

In our lungs, out our mouth

Breathe does not exist without the beat; the beat with out the breathe

Inhale the luxury of life

Exhale the torture of living

By Sheri Hall

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Thank you for reading,

Namaste, Sheri

 

Capture your grief Poetry

Journal

It holds your private thoughts

Can carry your hidden dreams

A permanent record of you

The innocence of a first diary entry

Becomes the necessity of exploring your world in writing

By Sheri Hall

Books

Filling through page after page

Searching for answers

Looking for new ones to feed the need to know

Discovering a new topic or writer

light turns to dark and you just cannot stop

Fallen asleep with the spine on your chest

Waking to dried tears on a page

Underlining words that give you pause

The pile of precious books that never leaves your night table

You’ve read them over and over

They have taught you

Some have carried you

The love of a certain book is a private space

That if you allow you will fall in love with the solitary companion

That is a book

By Sheri Hall

Sacred Place

Quiet or loud

Near or far

Bright or dark

Our sacred place is always in our heart

We feel peace

We feel pain

We feel light

That sacred place hears our plight

To escape

To feel

To remember

Even if not a  physical place

Our sacred place is there

In our heart

In our mind

In a forest

On a bench

On a beach

On a boat

A temple

A church

A walk

Your place of worship

Yours to chose

Your sacred place you will never lose

By Sheri Hall

Thank you for reading,

Namaste,

Sheri

f0c47d1320fb2fe769d047d5fc34df45Up Next # 8, 9, 10