Friday, November 29, 2013

Thanksgiving (Now Just A Memory)

Well, another Thanksgiving has come and gone. I assume all enjoyed a fabulous day of great tasting food, drinks of the adult kind and quality conversation.  I suspect you remembered to snap photographs and record video so that you can relive these precious memories over and over again. My wish is that each of you took time out (independently of your guests) to embrace a moment of reflection on those things you are truly thankful for. I hope you allowed yourself the opportunity to step out of your comfort zone, diving deep within the walls of your consciousness, thinking not just about the obvious, but about those things for which we often take for granted: a friend who listens when we gripe, an employee who helps us out when we are weak in certain areas of our job, a friend who champions our cause before we show our vulnerability, a neighbor who says you’re in their thoughts by calling to check in.

Take your good fortune of yesterday and allow it to nurture your spirit now and into the next Thanksgiving. We must make a pact with ourselves, promising to live a life of quality, not of quantity. Take your happiness and share it with the world, especially with those who are down and out, lost, bewildered and confused. Always remember that a true 'thanksgiving' is not one day, but every day.

This year I decided to spend the holiday alone. I know some of you will read this and say, “You could have come to my house. Why were you alone? That is so depressing.” – Quite the contrary, dear friends.  Many of us relegate and perceive situations as sad, critical or dire without knowing the circumstances. If you really care and know the person, take time out to play with the pieces of the puzzle and you’ll realize they’re doing just what needs to be done.  (Always know your audience, and with that you can find the truth without jumping to conclusions or propagating your beliefs onto someone else – food for thought).

My celebration with me, myself and I was intentional, deliberate and planned weeks in advance. My goal was simple, to spend quality time meditating and pondering the 'trueness of my thankfulness'.

I was invited to many places and declined the invites. Two of my friends were hosting parties, but I opted for something more personal and meaningful, thus the comfort and privacy of my own home. A neighbor/friend pleaded with me to join him and his family, which would have been nice, but it didn’t feel right because my resolve demanded I take my planned course of action.


It Pays To Look Back (Thanksgiving: 2009)

This is my first year celebrating Thanksgiving as a Celiac. It has been a journey (a battle of sorts) that I wish on no one, not even my archenemies. I don’t care how angry we get, those who hurt us, bring us down or attempt to break our spirit must always be looked upon with hope. We must pray for their ability to understand, thus bringing about change.

It has been a long two years into my recovery. My journey has taken me on a roller coaster ride of emotions that I dare not ride again. However, that is only a wish and I know there is no way to ever escape those types of feelings, because they precipitate my future.

I have never in my life been more thankful than I am today because there were days when I just didn’t think I was going to make it. There was so much physical, emotional and mental pain that I thought it would consume me, thus leading to my untimely demise.

The past two years have been filled with the ups and downs of weight, significant amounts of blood loss, colonoscopies, endoscopies, surgery and always the ABCs chasing after me (abdominal pain, bloating and constipation). I’ve had to endure severe cases of blepharitis and mouth trauma, all amounting to additional pain.

I am thankful for so many things, but most importantly for my health, which I finally got back five months ago (and with no medications). I wish the doctors at the beginning of my journey could have told me to stop consuming gluten, but they did not. Instead I was misdiagnosed, given drugs that I’m allergic to and was pushed around in an antiquated healthcare system that I’m convinced doesn’t always put the patient first.

More importantly, I am thankful for the books, magazine, blogs and other resources that have been written for people like me who have an allergy to gluten. I am indebted to all who penned their stories of recovery, thus giving me hope and inspiration. Your journey was not in vane because you’ve helped many people overcome, and I am one such person.

I have learned to look at food in a whole new way. I’ve become more creative in my approach. I’ve also been able to educate the clueless wonders of the world about Celiac Disease.

People need to be more responsible with what goes in their mouth and I am not just talking food. There are many things that feed into disease (food for thought for those who get my drift).



******

My table for one this season was just what I needed, and for many reasons. I wanted to sit amongst my favorite things – art, books, and music. I was eager to utilize introspection in a quiet space while relaxing and considering my future moves, which include never taking anything for granted, doing things I enjoy with great passion, being around people who inspire me and always treating my body like the true temple it is. There are many of you who need to follow my lead, and you know who you are.

A table for one is a remarkable place to be sometimes, because that’s a place where we can reenergize, always-appreciating life more. It’s a great place for reconnecting and pondering the future. What’s even better is it affords us the opportunity to watch people, and in watching them you’re seeing yourself, and in looking at you maybe you can find a way to better control your world.

Let’s all attempt to live our best life – today, and every day.  Here’s to a happy December, which is just around the corner.  Cheers! – paerki







What would life be like without memories? It’s fair to say, there would be no life at all. Memory is our communication, reason, coherence, our action and more importantly, our feeling. Memories create our path in life, developing our psychology and leading us emotionally.

One of the best ways to create and store memories is with video. These simple effortless little snippets of time create diaries and become perpetual time capsules, which justify our walk on earth, telling all with great enthusiasm… I was here! I mattered! I lived! Please, don’t forget me.

Share your views, thoughts and opinions in the written word. Snap photographs so that your eyes can travel back in time, remembering the happy and sad moments that made you the person you were, are and became in life. But, whenever possible, capture video to enhance the memories you leave behind, so that others may pass the essence of your life on to future generations.

Homeland

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World AIDS Day (Dec 1, 2013): Many scientific advances have been made in HIV/AIDS treatment. There are laws to protect people living with HIV/AIDS, and we understand so much more about the condition. But despite this, there are still individuals who do not know the facts about how to protect themselves and others, and... Continue Reading

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A Culture Of Hate (Jan 9, 2011): Weekends fly by so quickly, or so it appears. However, this particular weekend seemed unusually long, and I think it had something to do with the gruesome events that took place on Saturday in Tucson, Arizona. I am shocked by the horror that unfolded, a young man throwing his entire... Continue Reading

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H.P. Rawlings Conservatory & Botanic Gardens

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I love photographs! They have this amazing ability to tell stories of fun places, special moments, memorable events, and exciting places. They give us reason to pause and remember friends, family, coworkers and so many others. One photograph can conjure up a flood of memories taking us on a journey. They help us remember the past, enjoy the present and ponder the future.

On a cold and rainy day I love sitting in my living room with a roaring fire, a glass of wine, classical music playing in the background and my many photographs scattered about me. I love sifting through what I call my special collection, which refers to my favorites. They remind me of the saddest and happiest moments of my life. They remind me of challenges and overcoming.

My large collection of images are a testament to a life lived. Life happens all around us so it’s important to collect special memories, and what better way than with a photograph.

Edith Ann

Mind Body Green (Feb 6, 2014): To the haters, I feel so sad for you – mournful for your lack of empathy and understanding. No one is shoving anything down your throat. This is reality. What's wrong with this photo? This is life! For every photo shown of gay people kissing, there are millions and millions... Continue Reading

Peabody Institute

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Yielding To Signs (Mar 28, 2011): Sunday was the perfect day to be outdoors. The sky was a bright baby blue and absolutely stunning to look at, especially when it became the backdrop for seagulls and blackbirds, effortlessly soaring and plummeting in between wind gusts. It was magical, a hypnotic visual sensation... Continue Reading
There are many people in the world affected by disease. I never thought I would be one of the many. However, at any given time life can change. Mine did! There were many twists and turns, but I made it through and you can too. I am a Celiac on the move living life one meal at a time. Learn more about my life as a Celiac. Celiac Disease is a lifelong, digestive disorder affecting children and adults. In short, I have an allergy to gluten, and the treatment is a lifelong scrupulous avoidance of it.

No matter what, know this: You are never alone. There are people out there who’ve struggled, endured, made it through and are sharing their message of survival. No, they might not be at your side, but their spirit is out there in words, attempting to help others on their journey. Let’s all unite by sharing our individual stories, remedies for healthy living, food and recipes to keep us strong, and let’s find the laughter too because it can be some of the best medicine. Always remember, there is power in numbers. Check me out: A Celiac On The Move

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Country Drive

A Happy Life Begins At Home (Apr 19, 2010): My home is very important to me. My life between these four walls of privacy I value like no other. It’s immeasurable, and absolutely priceless. It’s an oasis with a cocoon-like feeling, shielding me from the outside manipulative forces of violence and pollution. It allows... Continue Reading
"I distrust those people who know so well what God wants them to do because I notice it always coincides with their own desires." - Susan B. Anthony

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