When I visited my mom today at lunch, she was so happy. She just had her hair done. Even with mild pneumonia, she still can smile.

Tomorrow, I am going to visit Jason’s grave. It is getting closer to his “anniversary of the heart.” As May approaches, the poignancy of his life and death envelops me. I will be at the cemetery to attend the unveiling for the gravestone of my friend, Sonia’s husband.

I would like to write about my theme of “having hope.”

I wrote about hope almost to the day a year ago when my journey first began. My post was entitled: #85 THERE WAS HOPE FOR ME 

For decades, I lived my life a certain way. I grieved and continued to face many challenges. Stress and worry always felt familiar, and I was simply numb from so much “scar tissue.” There was a lyric line in my song “Laughter and Tears,” that spoke to that. It was:

“Numbness and pain left no room in my heart.” 

It became a “habit” for me to hide any emotion. 

I didn’t expect that anything would ever change, even though I was always grateful for so much in my life. 

My journey began when I decided to take a different path. When my “new path” appeared, I was ready to follow it. I was so tired of the path that I was on for so many years. 

My new path represented hope! 

With that path, everything changed for me. I opened up my heart to the world. When my heart opened up, I found my music. 

Every human must find their own path and it is never too late. Never give up hope! 

I held onto the hope that someday I would be happy again. Even if it took decades, it was worth hoping for. 

There was hope for me!

I don’t know why we’re all so serious in this picture!

“Life is full of challenges and blessings”

I have had a tendency to see things as “black and white.” Today, I’ve decided to categorize my thoughts in a different way. 

Therefore, my “good and bad list” will be replaced instead with a list of “challenges and blessings.” 

As I drove to record my new song, I wondered how I could express my joy while singing. At my last voice lesson a few days earlier, my teacher, Peaches said to me, “Your voice is a little tight today.” It wasn’t hard for me to figure out why. Our voice is very affected by our emotions. 

After yelling at one of my teenagers the night before, my throat felt sore. Fortunately, the next morning my voice didn’t hurt anymore. 

I paused my “practice singing” while driving to make a phone call. I needed to check on my mother. Her caregiver said, “When I arrived she was screaming your name in the dining room. ”She’s been coughing a lot and the facility ordered breathing treatments and a chest x-ray.

(A challenge!) 

My mother was asleep, so I planned to call her after my recording session. 

After that phone call, I checked on my 86-year-old father who was going to have surgery in the afternoon. I propped up his spirits.

(A blessing!) 

I arrived at my arranger, George’s guesthouse. The very first thing I did was sing my new song for him. My arm was well bandaged so I could play my guitar. The movements hurt, but I was grateful that I was able to play without mistakes.

(A blessing!) 

I sang my song and I was healed!

In this picture, my dad received his Phd from USC. I was probably 11 years old. Those glasses are unbelievable!

Normally, when driving home I always listen to my newest, song recording. I called my mother instead. She didn’t mention anything about her morning “episode.” She sounded clearer and said to me, “I love hearing your voice and I am so lucky to have a daughter like you!”

(A blessing!) 

I had a voicemail message from my mother’s nurse. The x-ray showed pneumonia and she would need antibiotics.

(A challenge!) 

I came home and carried in my guitar. In my other hand, I carried a hard drive with recovered files I had picked up from a computer recovery service. For $150, I had all of my important art files back that I had accidentally erased last week. Even though I needed to re-organize everything, it was a huge relief to know that years of digitally scanning my artwork were not lost.

(A blessing!)

I changed my bandage and noticed that my arm did not hurt as much as it had the last few days. Thankfully, it really was getting better.

(A blessing!) 

It was dinnertime and my family was hungry. We all went out to dinner at a local “fresh,” Mexican restaurant. Everyone got along, and I relished listening to the animated conversations – even more than my food. I could still hear my new song recording “looping” in my head.

(A blessing!)

Yesterday, my father had surgery in the afternoon. It wasn’t until later in the evening when he was able to speak with me. He was disappointed; the procedure to “zap” his kidney stones was unsuccessful, but the surgeon said the next attempt in a few weeks time should work. 

While I was speaking to my dad, he began to moan and cry out loudly. I waited and listened to his agonizing cries. Then he hung up on me. While I waited to call back, my heart ached for him.

(A challenge!)

My life is so full of challenges and blessings. But whenever I listen to my beautiful song that tells my story, my heart soars.

Excerpt from a friend’s card:

I was so sorry to hear about that terrible burn you got. How awful for you. You deal with so much between your son’s arm injury, your mom’s dementia and your dad’s recent hospitalization yet, you are eternally optimistic – a true inspiration to me. You can see in the enclosed picture how happy you always look and what a beautiful smile you have. 

My newest song will be completed this weekend. Below is the third verse I wrote last week, and after that I was ready to record my song. 

With grief there is no sound, and it would seem

that joy she’d finally found

hope became her theme

‘cause she could dream . . . 

I started out with all my rhymes at the top of the page.

© Judy Unger and http://www.myjourneysinsight.com 2011. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Judy Unger with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

About Judy

I'm an illustrator by profession. At this juncture in my life, I am pursuing my dream of writing and composing music. Every day of my life is precious!
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  1. Karyn @ kloppenmum says:

    Those glasses are awesome!


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