You can read while listening to the smooth sounds of the LifeTrain Radio here. We roll with Smooth Old School RnB and Smooth Jazz… PRESS RADIO PLAYER BUTTON UPPER RIGHT. ENJOY YOUR TIME ABOARD THE TRAIN!
You can read while listening to the smooth sounds of the LifeTrain Radio here. We roll with Smooth Old School RnB and Smooth Jazz… PRESS RADIO PLAYER BUTTON UPPER RIGHT. ENJOY YOUR TIME ABOARD THE TRAIN!
I’m tripping a bit because sometimes I pay it forward with these writings. I write for closure, I write because it’s cathartic but, most of all I hope that writings will help. Well, now i know they do because sometimes I have to refer back to pieces I’ve done. I guess it’s a pay forward. Read on and you may understand.
I like to add mood music based on how I am feeling at the time of editing so kick this off and read on…
As I previously confided, I was told that I have a potentially terminal illness in 2010. Disclaimer: YOU WILL NOT be continually bombarded with that news every-time you come to the train. However, I plan to use that news to educate and help others who may be dealing with personally or with a loved one the same sort of issue, facing ones life’s end. I rejoice in the fact the God our creator chose to leave me here a little longer, so I plan to use that time for his honor and glory.
Now, one of the things I realized while in the hospital is that you have to learn to allow others to love you, and be grateful to those who do love and care about you. I will try to explain but, it won’t be easy. When I took my Myers Briggs test while studying at Rutgers university, my letters (THIMG something or other) indicated that I was a closet introvert, with the ability to be a very good extrovert. I laughed later as I taught at a small college previously in North Carolina. My students seemed to love me and my department dean once told me I was his best instructor based on feedback from the students. After each class though I was WIPED OUT WORN OUT… It took a lot out of me to stand before 20 or so students and keep there attention for four hours a night. I learned that my colleagues basically just taught but, I gave my students the benefits of my experience (and Christianity) and actually gave them an evening of interactive entertainment. However, I laughed at my self after each class because I would be SO worn out mentally. Then I remembered my Briggs test results. …And now, whats the point chuck? Well, I have to learn how not to be a closet loner/introvert and allow folks to love me and truly appreciate that. The hospital stay really opened my eyes to that. Further, I don’t have to be ashamed of not being immortal…STH!!! None of us are…but, all of us are if we accept the son of our father, Yahweh Elohim.
I did this interview with a Doctor friend of mine over a year ago prior to my knowledge of being sick. DANNNNNNNNG!!! Didn’t even know it would be for me! SEE THE HUMOR!!! LOL! Well, again I chalk it up as my Father’s provision! …WOW, I just thought of something. I used to head up a ministry class called “PROVISION”. It was a class based on biblical finances. Hey, am I all over the place this morning or what?
Anyway, check out this interview and PLEASE use it if necessary and above all…be blessed!
“How to Handle a Terminal Illness Diagnosis both personally or of a loved one”
Chuckie: My Doctor! My fine Frain of the mind exploration! My lady with De (“DE” get it) wisdom of Solomon! You can tell me when to stop Doc!
Chuckie: Well, Dr. Dee, first…Let me once again thank you for hopping the train and opening the doors of your Doctor’s office car. Although I kid with you, know that I have the utmost respect, love and appreciation for you.
DrDee: Mmmm hmmmm. Flattery will get you nowhere…:)
Chuckie: Doc, this week I’d like to discuss how to handle the news that you, (or a loved one), have been diagnosed with a terminal illness. Over the last few months I’ve come into the knowledge of several of these types of situations.
DrDee: Ok, that’s fine, Chuckie. We’ll see what we can do.
Chuckie: As I begin, or shall I say before I begin, what are your most immediate thoughts on this topic?
DrDee: Well, I think that dealing with impending death, either one’s own, or that of a loved one, can be a difficult thing. But unlike unexpected death’s, there is time to prepare. And that can be a good thing, if handled in healthy way.
Chuckie: Immediately upon receiving the news, how can one cope? Especially if you have a medical practitioner whose bedside manner isn’t the best?
DrDee: Well it’s pretty rare that anyone gets diagnosed with a terminal illness out of the clear blue sky. Usually, that person has been having some symptoms that lead them to a doctor’s office in the first place. So the person may have had some suspicions that things may turn out for the worst. Now that doesn’t mean that her friends and family have been made aware of those symptoms, but there is usually at least a hint that something is amiss, and that it could be serious, or the person would not be at the doctor. It’s a really good idea to prepare yourself for the visit where you will receive the results of whatever testing has taken place. The doctor has usually mentioned some possibilities beforehand. Good preparation is to begin researching those possibilities, just in case you hear bad news. Another way to prepare is to consider who it is you would want with you when the news is delivered. Oftentimes, and especially when you have a physician who may be lacking in bedside manner, once the news has been delivered, the person stops hearing what’s being said. So it’s a good idea to have someone with you who can do that listening for you, and possibly re-explain what they heard after you’ve left the office. If you don’t feel you want anyone with you, then at least take a tape recorder with you, and ask the doctor if it’s ok to record the conversation so you can review it later. They usually don’t object. If you have not had a chance to prepare, or you haven’t taken the opportunity to do so, and you have already heard the news, you may want to do all that research. Knowledge is power. Knowledge can also allay some of the “fear of the unknown”. Find out the details of the illness, the course, and the treatment possibilities. People cope with this kind of news in different ways. Sometimes they don’t cope at all. But coping is something that will be going on from the time they hear the news until the day they die, so nobody has to get it “right” immediately.
Chuckie: What are some of the basic things you should ask either your Doctor or your loved one?
DrDee: I think the thing most people want to know is “How long do I have left”. That’s a difficult question to answer, because that all depends on a number of factors, such as what kind of illness you have and what it’s typical course is, whether there is some kind of treatment available to lengthen the lifespan, whether you have any other underlying problems, whether you are in good mental health (depression can weaken the immune system, a positive attitude can actually improve your quality of life, and can strengthen your immune system, which may add a few days to your lifespan) etc. But you would want to know things like what those treatments are, what the possible outcomes of each might be, whether the treatment is going to add or detract from quality of life, whether there will be any pain, and how that pain will be managed, whether there are any support groups for your particular diagnosis. What you may want to ask of loved one for is assistance with developing a will, for the disposition of property and the provision of guardianship for any children who may be impacted, where your assets will go, etc. You may also need assistance with designating someone for “power of attorney”, should you need or want that. You may want to ask for assistance with planning how you want to spend your remaining time, and you may want assistance with telling the family and friends. Sometimes having someone supportive by your side is helpful, when sharing the news with others.
Chuckie: Do you think it is best to spend time alone before telling anyone?
DrDee: That all depends on the individual. Some people need or want time alone to process what it means that they have a very short time left, that they have a terminal illness that may even be very painful and cause them to lose awareness of their identity, or cause them to forget people who are important to them. Others need to have social support immediately, and will want to share the news as soon as possible.
Chuckie: Of course the Bible should come into play don’t you think?
DrDee: It can, assuming the person finds comfort in that book. Many people do find that they have more questions about what happens “after” death, and will begin to seek answers in scripture. Others are clear on what happens, but may not feel so clear on what will happen to “them”, and so they begin to work on their own relationship with the Lord. I think it’s important to ask a person what they need spiritually. A good spiritual orientation can help give meaning to a person’s life, as well as their impending death. It can also be of great comfort to friends and family.
Chuckie: Are there any tips for controlling your emotions both short and long-term? How can you keep control of your thoughts, mind, and reactions?
DrDee: Well, that all depends on what you mean by “control”. I don’t think it’s necessarily healthy to try to keep you from experiencing normal, healthy emotions. It’s perfectly normal to feel sadness, anger, sometimes disillusionment, fear, many things, when hearing that you have something the doctor’s can’t cure. I say find a place to feel. Go cry. Go close the door and holler if you need to. I think it’s important to remind yourself (or your loved one) that you aren’t dead yet, and there is still much that needs to be done to make that a smooth transition for your family. Also, this is the time to decide how you want that time spent. Do you want to see that place you always wanted to see? Go visit those friends you always wanted to visit? Learn that skill you never got to learn? For some, those things become very clear, and very important. And they can still get it done. For others, because of the limitations imposed by the illness, they may not be able to fulfill those “last wishes”. But that’s where friends and family can come in. If you’re loved one “always wanted to travel to Europe”, they may not be able to go, but a friend could surely get books and videos of that place to share with the loved one. Some people want to journal, or write final letters for loved ones, etc. All of these are positive ways to channel emotions and thoughts about upcoming death. Some even want to plan their own funerals, and that’s fine. For those who have a difficult time accepting the illness and impending death, a mental health professional may be needed. A therapist can assist a person to come to grips with the illness, help them work through issues related to death, to leaving family members, and to never having accomplished the things one wanted to. Some are skilled at teaching pain management techniques that can also be helpful, and others can help with the “telling”. Family members can be brought in to therapy sessions, and the news of the illness shared in that environment. Many times, friends and family need assistance coping with the impending loss of a loved one. Sometimes the loss will actually impact their own identity (such as a spouse who will become a widow or widower), and the new identity will take some getting used to. Sometimes there are issues between the dying person and their loved one, and they will need assistance working through them. These are issues that can be worked out without a therapist, but a therapist can be useful, if desired.
Chuckie: In your opinion do you feel that if you tell the wrong relatives or friends, they might tell you all kinds of negative reports and death stories? – And of course that would NOT be what you need at the moment. I read that these stories and reports could cause fear. Further as I understand it this fear could cause the body to release hormones and chemicals that soak each individual body cells which could harm them (body cells) and cause death.
DrDee: Well, that can be true of any situation. Some people just don’t know how to be supportive. And they can certainly cause unnecessary fears. And yes, fear causes a stress response in the body. You know, fight or flight. Only you can’t run from the illness, and in the case of a terminal illness, you already know you are going to lose the fight. So the hormones generated by stress can weaken the immune system, and shorten the lifespan.
Chuckie: How can one best be supportive of a loved one who is in this situation?
Dr.Dee: Listening is important. Sometimes they have a lot they want to say. The person knows you can’t do anything about the illness, but they may want to just know they are loved, and that their lives have meant something. Sometimes they will need answers to hard questions, like why God would “allow” this, or “take” them. Sometimes you will have an answer, sometimes you just have to be honest and say you don’t know. Asking the person what kind of support they need is also important. Sometimes they can tell you what they need. You can also call your local hospice organization, and they offer a wealth of services and information for friends and loved ones, as well as people who are in the final stages of life. Respecting the stated wishes of the loved one is a respectful and supportive thing to do, as well. Don’t promise things you know you won’t or can’t follow through on, but try to be as supportive of their wishes as you can be.
Chuckie: This is certainly not an easy or fun topic but, I felt it important to at least touch on it. Can you share any parting thoughts on this issue?
DrDee: Well, as I mentioned, hospice can offer so many services to those who are dying, and their families. They try to assist with providing as high a quality of life as is possible. Something as simple as changing from solid pain medication to a liquid one can make all the difference in the comfort of a loved one who can no longer swallow well. They can be very supportive, especially during the final hours. They have knowledge of signs of active dying, and can help you to know when to call the family. Having hospice involved can be very comforting, at a very difficult time for friends, family, and for the loved one who is dying.
Chuckie: Thanks again for stopping by. We’ll see you next week for another interesting topic…as soon as I figure out what that will be.
DrDee: Ok, just don’t wait till the last minute to visit me again…my social life might be picking up…;)
Chuckie: WOT!!!Â Well…Just how ugly is he?
Well, it’s a wrap, another great session with the Doctor, Dr. Diedra Hayman Ph.d. .Â Join me on the couch next week for “Therapy Thursday” on the LiFeTrain!
It is truly difficult to be happy these days with all the negativity that surrounds us. The television news brings the horror of today’s reality right into our own homes. You can have nightmares from
the ugly images that we see daily in the worldwide media. Yet amidst all of this tragedy, we must strive to remain sane and happy. We can’t allow outside circumstances to dictate the condition of our hearts. Let’s do our best to focus on the positive side of life as Henry Miller does. The time to be happy is now. The place to be happy is where you are. And the way to be happy is to make someone else happy today. Be thankful for your own blessings and be willing to share the gifts you have received. Try it – you will like it!
All Aboard, the LifeTrain!
Hey passengers, Welcome to “Therapy Thursday” on the LifeTrain. A very good friend of mine recently asked me if I would ask Dr.E if she could ever fully recover from a failed love in order to fully love her new husband to be. She was in the midst of considering a second marriage venture and she just wanted to be sure. Well, in hopes of helping other passengers possibly dealing with this situation we decided to share certain aspects of our “Panera Bread” meeting conversation that I managed to schedule and facilitate. My conclusion (interested in hearing yours) is even after a lost love/marriage, it is possible. Not easy, but possible. For discretion sake we’ll call my friend “MISSY”…but, you can still call me Chuckie!
Here is an excerpt from a longer dialogue we had with my recovering yet hopeful friend. I hope you will find in it some truths that may work for you. And as per PROTOCOL…the mood, the music…KICK IT!
I want so much to forget my LL (lost Love). And there are times when I actually hate him. I know a lot of people get involved in affairs in thier maeriage. But this was different, and it is harder for me to put it to rest. I keep thinking how sad and how stupid it was for me not to see the signs of his infidelity. It has spoiled many memories of how love can be.
I was totally caught by surprise when he left me, I feel so stupid. And to make matters worse, afdterwards I really thought that I could maintain friendship feelings for this man. But little did I realize how sick my marriage really was and just how hurt I had been. No one taught me how to be married and how to deal with a lost marriage. And when we started talking again, it did not take long for old feelings resentment to resurface and take precedence in my life. I truly believed that I had made a horrible mistake in marrying my husband when it was all over. I did not realize that marriage could take such a toll once lost.
You don’t have to have closure of forgetting, or closure of no feelings. Remember the good, even credit it with restoring your desire for marriage again and showing you what was right for you. The only important thing is your clarity that it does not have to happen again, and I know you have that. And that you forgive yourself, release any guilt feelings and forgive your ex. Let that be enough. And remember it’s okay to love a memory.
Just as your ex-husband has moved on, I hope you will yourself find the strength to move on, especially before entering into another serious relationship such as marriage. Yes, lost loves are difficult, very difficult. You did not go looking for this trouble, this heartache. It caught you by surprise. You had no experience with this type of thing, not even awareness of the risks of such pain and sorrow.
If I could magically grant you three wishes, it would be that 1) you forgive your lost lover, 2) that you remember the good of what you had together in the initial romance, in the past, and that you can have that again with your new intended 3) and that the past union memory fades into a soft-focus past tense and stays there. Let it go Missy, move on sweetie.
Thanks Dr Hath. My new Boaz and i are going through marriage counseling and doing a lot of research, we have learned that love goes through a lot of stages and once you reach the stage when you lose that “in love” high, that’s when you need to really work at finding ways to keep the romance alive.
I sometimes refer to what happened as a marital heart attack. And just like having a real life-threatening scare, we are learning how to better take care of each other and believe me, we are reaping the benefits! And I am coming alive again!
DrE: Keep the Conductor and I appraised of your new union, we wish you the best.
Well passengers, that’s the short of it. Again for discrestion sake I had to edit out a whole lot of this conversation. I do hope that the parts I was able to share may be of help if ever (hopefully not) needed
All Aboard! The LifeTrain!
All Aboard!!! And Merry Monday as we say at the start of the week here on the LifeTrain.
Dear Passengers…The fact that you hopped the train to ride with me makes me owe you a debt of gratitude. So, here’s a lesson for us all. And if you like this please tell your peeps to hop the Train and check it out.
This Merry Monday I am publishing something I got from a friend in email. It was one of those forwarded things everyone gets. I usually read them quickly and delete them. This one had a message that resonated with me so I thought I would share it in case you had not received it.
When she sent it to me it came with the heading Charles Schultz Philosophy. Before I posted it I Googled Charles Schultz Philosophy and found this on Snopes. This was not written by Charles Schulz (this is the correct spelling of the Peanuts comic strip author) but by Dennis Fakes instead. As my friend said when I wrote her this finding, “What can you believe any more?” My answer to her was: definitely not email. Still no matter who wrote it the message provides a reminder of who is important in your life. Here is the message:
You don’t have to actually answer the questions. Just ponder on them.
Just read the e-mail straight through and you’ll get the point.
How did you do?
The point is none of us remember the head liners of yesterday.
These are no second-rate achievers.
They are the best in their fields.
But the applause dies..
Achievements are forgotten.
Accolades and certificates are buried with their owners.
Here’s another quiz. See how you do on this one:
The people who make a difference in your life are not the ones with the most credentials the most money…or the most awards. They simply are the ones who care the most
All Aboard! The LifeTrain!
ALL ABOARD! As we continue down the tracks this Tuesday, “TIPs TUESDAY”, the train stops at the station called: “The Law office of Ewing Carter III”.
Chuckie: Attorney E!!!
EC III: CHUCK D!!!
Chuckie: E, I was thinking…
EC III: Uh Oh passengers we are in trouble. Who knows what’s coining next??!!
Chuckie: No…seriously, stop playing.
EC III: Ok…What’s up?
Chuckie: I was thinking that you should make me a full partner in your Lawfirm. And we should perhaps rename it to “The Law office of Daniel and Carter. EH? Like that?
EC III: There’s just one little problem with that cat daddy…LAW SCHOOL! As in you pass the bar and we will talk…
Chuckie: You know what man, you always sweating the details. YOU ARE ALWAYS GETTING BOGGED DOWN IN DETAILS! Let’s just get to the question…”GEORGE!”. Here read this, it’s an email from one of only two fans of “Legally speaking”. The other one being you! I wish the passengers could see you putting on those coke bottle bottom glasses.
EC III: My …LOL… Aren’t we the sensitive one today, MAN-O-PAUSE?
EC III: Let’s see here.
Dear Mr. Conductor, would you please pass this on the Attorney Carter. This is causing my family and I a great degree of anxiety. My sister, Denise (who lives in Cincinnati, Oh) has a 15yr. old daughter, Stephanie that has had “behavioral problems” at her high school. My husband and I live in Dayton, Ohio. During the brief Thanksgiving “holiday break”, we brought Stephanie back to live with us so she could complete her high school education in Cincinnati. Our children are grown and on their own. I have a good relationship with Stephanie, and feel that I can monitor her more closely than her mother. Denise is working full-time and taking classes at night in hopes of making a career change. When I went to enroll Stephanie in our local public high school, the Principal stated that because she is changing schools in the middle of the year, a court Order was required authorizing her transfer. How do I handle this? How long will this take, because Stephanie doesn’t need to miss anymore school days?
EC III: [answer] Consult with an attorney that handles domestic and/or civil cases. The quickest method is to obtain a Custody Consent Order for your niece. Procedurally, your lawyer would draft a “friendly lawsuit” naming you and your husband as “plaintiffs,” and both Denise and Stephanie’s father as “defendants.” If both parents are involved in the child’s life, then both would provide notarized signatures agreeing to the school transfer as part of the Consent Order. Also, the reason for the transfer would have to be “in the best interests of the child.”
In the past, children have moved from school to school for the following reasons: 1) seeking a higher profile school for sports involvement, 2) personal conflicts with peers, and 3) parents unhappy with the quality of education in their neighborhood schools. The Court’s involvement with mid-year school transfers assist in stabilizing school districts by keeping these types of transfers at a minimum.
Most jurisdictions will permit a student to enroll immediately, if the school receives a copy of a filed “friendly lawsuit.” After that point, the actual Custody Consent Order will need to be presented to the school within thirty (30) days. Again, that Order will include the signatures of the plaintiffs, defendant(s) and District Court Judge.
Chuckie: Well, at least you know the law, if not athletics.
EC III: Email the passenger back please. I’d like to know how things turn out for her. And as for you… “GET OUT!”
Well passengers once again the good Doctor, Dr.Diedra Hayman, Ph.D. is back with us here on the LifeTrain.
Dr. Hayman’s goal is to provide a relevant and user-friendly venue for discovering ways to move forward with your life.
This week I continue to ask the Doc for advice on battling the holiday blues:
Chuckie: Why do you think that domestic violence realizes such an increase during the Holidays? Is this in any way related to depression?
Dr. Dee: domestic violence is not always related to depression. It can be, but its actually seen as a separate issue. Many things can trigger men, and sometimes women, to resort to violence, but often around the holidays, control over how money is spent or how family and friends access the couple can trigger an episode of violence.
Chuckie: Any suggestions for mitigating this circumstance?
Dr. Dee: Victims of domestic violence are encouraged to make use of shelters and other agencies designed to help them escape, and perpetrators also can take advantage of mental health services aimed at that population. Some shelters take women along with their children, and some can even make arrangements for a victim’s pets. Pets are often used as a means of threatening a victim into staying. Its often difficult to get both victims and perpetrators to seek help, but it is available.
Chuckie: What criteria should one use when seeking a therapist?
Dr.Dee: therapists generally have a theory or two that they tend to favor. Find out what it is, and whether that fits with your own style. If you want unconditional support and your therapist is a behaviorist, you may not get what you’re looking for! Also ask about licensing and credentials. Anyone can call themselves a therapist. But you need to know the state has said they meet a minimum educational standard. Find out through the state licensing board for their profession whether they have any complaints against them, or whether their license has been suspended. These actions help protect you as a consumer, but few people will actually do this. Interview the therapist as you would a babysitter. If you aren’t comfortable, if the chemistry isn’t right, move on.
Chuckie: What should one expect to achieve in Her/His first session
Dr. Dee: the first session is usually a chance to get some history of your situation or symptoms, and to establish some rapport. Depending on the setting, it may be filled with paperwork, including setting goals and determining how you’ll know when treatment is finished. Some first sessions may be focused on allowing you to “tell your story”, which is what a lot of people want to jump right into from the word “go”. Sometimes the therapist will slow you down so you don’t tell too much too fast. People don’t realize that can leave them feeling very vulnerable sometimes. It should be a comfortable appointment where the limits of confidentiality are discussed, as well as having a framework for the therapy, defined.
Chuckie: well what are the limits of confidentiality? I thought i could tell a therapist anything and they’d have to keep it confidential.
Dr. Dee: in general that is true. However, there are certain circumstances that require the therapist to break that confidentiality: if you tell me you’re going to kill yourself, i have to not only tell, but do whatever i can to keep you safe. That may mean getting responsible family involved, it may mean hospitalization for a few days. If you tell me you’re going to kill someone else, i have to not only tell the intended victim, but the police and my boss. If you tell me you are abusing a child physically or sexually, or yiu are under age or an elderly person, i have to call that in to child or adult protective services. If the court orders me, i have to break confidence. And of course third party payors like insurance companies and medicaid have a right to access records. If the court sent you for services or you are a minor and your parent sent you, they have a right to access your records.
Chuckie: As promised, we limit our “Ask the Doc” session to just a few questions each week. So in closing any additional words of wisdom for battling the Holiday Blues?
Dr. Dee: sure! Its usually very helpful to direct your energy toward helping someone less fortunate. Anything that shifts the focus away from yourself to others, has a tendency to lift the spirits. Also, exercise in the fresh air, even the cold air, is a mood elevator.
Chuckie: Well, our time has come to an end. Thanks Doc for joining us here on the LifeTrain. Love ya gurl!
Dr.Dee: Love you too! See ya next week. Oh, and hey passengers, all Aboard, The LifeTrain…LOL!
All Aboard! Welcome back to the Train, The LifeTrain. As you board today I do the usual, hand you a business card to start your ride. It reads:
Love is the ocean which accepts all manner of rivers without questioning their origin.
I want to re-introduce you to one of my many MIND Doctor friends, Dr. Emily Hath PhD. Dr. E as I affectionately call her, and I know that there are people that tend to be more prone to the holiday blues. People who have lost a loved one may be flooded with unresolved grief and painful memories of a once joyful time of year. For people with strained relationships with family members, this time of year can be filled with stress and conflict. Some people are not able to join their families for the holidays, which can bring on feelings of guilt and loneliness. And for people and families that are struggling financially, stretching the wallet or debt even more can trigger feelings of shame and depression.
For many people, the next 6 weeks are often filled with anything but holiday cheer.
So, each year the good Doc and I sit down over a cup of tea and discuss this very issue. If you’re feeling stressed or anxious during the upcoming holidays, make the time to check in with yourself. Putting on a happy face to “get through the holidays” isn’t doing anyone any favors, especially not for you. If this time of year is usually more stressful than festive, figure out what you need to do to alleviate that stress and make some changes. Over the next few Weeks Dr. Hath and I will be here to offer tips so hop bak aboard and listen to what we discuss. Listen in as we start our initial discussions about dealing with the holidays.
Chuckie: Dr E!
Dr.E: My main man, Chuckie the conductor!
Chuckie: You knows I loves me some Dr.E!
DrE: And you knows I loves me some Chuckie!
Chuckie: Dr.E A lot of people get anxious or sad around the holidays. For some people, the idea of getting together with family is stressful. I actually talked with a very dear friend last week who lamented about that very same thing. Having to put on a game face for the holidays. For others, having no family to share the holidays with is stressful. And this year in particular, many people have lost their jobs and their homes! So, Doc what can we offer to our ridership that may help restore true holiday cheer?
Dr.E: Well Chuckie, unfortunately we just might not be able to cheer up anyone who has lost so much, but if some of our riders have the garden variety seasonal blues, here are 5 ideas I think we should offer up:
If you are feeling sorry for yourself because everyone has a significant other and you don’t, get out your phone and call or text some old high school friends — people you are already in touch with through Facebook or long-lost friends — just to say hello and wish them happy holidays. They will feel great that you thought about them during this season and you, in turn, will feel appreciated and connected.
You can use use the holidays as an excuse to contact a lost love, too. Have you always thought about contacting a “special someone,” but were afraid to? Send a simple e-card, and maybe add, “Thinking of you this holiday season and wondering how you are doing. I’d enjoy hearing from you when you get a moment.” If your old flame responds with an email, there you go! If you get no response, it was only a generic e-card so you won’t feel foolish about the contact.
Some people won’t respond because they are married, not because they aren’t interested in you, so don’t assume! And your lost love may surprise you and write later. But never do this if you are married; you have no idea how devastating these reconnections can be for you, a lost love, and your families!
Attending a holiday party? Worried about greeting guests you haven’t seen in a long time? Break the ice before you get together. Send some cute e-cards (or even snail mail cards, which can be more impressive to some recipients): “Looking forward to seeing you again!” That will make them feel special, so by the time they arrive, it will feel like you were together just yesterday.
This is a good time to heal an old rift. Is there someone you were once close to (a former friend, ex-spouse, coworker, estranged relative)? The holiday season is a great time to heal old wounds. Send some cookies or a small
box of candy — aren’t Internet gift sites convenient? — with a simply note that says, “It’s been a long time. Let’s put the past behind us. Happy holidays.”
A sure way to feel better is to stop thinking about yourself and go out and do some volunteer work. Right now. Help your elder neighbor with the yard work, serve meals at your local food shelter, go to a park and feed the ducks. Leaving your own concerns and thinking of others is a real day brightener. We will delve deeper on a more clinical level but for now think about giving to get through the holidays.
Do you see the pattern here my man?: Reach out to people!
DrE: Merry Christmas Chuckie and same to the passengers on this Train!
All Aboard! Merry Monday! Welcome back aboard the LifeTrain. This week…let’s live in the present. And speaking of the present as you read this article, for your enjoyment here on the Train we have piped in music! Click the Radio button located in the upper right hand and enjoy the sounds as you read articles here.
Right at this moment is “YOUR LIFE!”.
Right at this moment is your life you might wonder ‘when will my life get better’? or ‘when will I get over this’? ‘when will things improve’? If you are wondering those things, you are wasting your life. Because the only time that
you have power over, is right now, right at this second.
Only right now, right at this second, do you have power to change.
If you feel sad, try to distract your mind. Do something small right now, to make you feel better. Try to focus on right now. By staying with the present, you become in full control of your life. And therefore in better control, of making better life plans for the future.
There is no magical place, in the future when things will get better, it is now. As this is all that you have power over.
One of the biggest reasons for stress, anxiety, is being in a situation that you feel is out of your control. It can feel overwhelming. But the truth is, in most every day circumstances, you have the power right now, to be how you want to be, to feel how you want to.
It is up to you whether you choose to be happy or sad. You can change your mind in an instant. The power and the choice is yours.
If you are feeling low. Do something NOW which YOU enjoy. Don’t worry about the future. Or sit in reflection on the past. You cannot change the past. You can shape the future, but it has not happened yet. Why waste today? And the joy that you could experience today, by focusing on joy that might, or might not happen tomorrow?
Have something nice to eat, go for a walk, see something beautiful, be that, architecture, art, wildlife, see the beauty that is all around you. Have a candle lit bath, indulge yourself. If you are feeling low, now is the time, to put extra effort into recharging your energy.
By focusing on what might happen in the future, or sitting in reflection of the past, you are wasting your life. Because life, your life, is simply now. Right now, right as you are reading this, at this very second. This is you.
So passengers, the point for this week is, be with the present, take control of your life, focus on now, and you will learn that the secret of true happiness really does come from within.
All Aboard! The LifeTrain!
Hey Passengers we need to visit with our LifeTrain resident Lawyer Attorney Ewing Carter III (www.ecarterlaw.com)! And just what train do you know of that has its own legal car! Boy I tell you, I just love being the conductor of this here Train! Today we find out what Attorney EC III advice is on driving this Holiday season! All Aboard!
Well, the long holiday season is now upon us. For many folks that means driving to family get-togethers, social outings, etc. So, let’s not ignore that white elephant in the legal car, Drinking and driving! This is especially high during the holidays, thus the reason for this discussion.
Chuckie: Attorney Ewing Carter III, good day my good man.
EC III: You trippin…as usual.
Chuckie: What for-uth does thine sayth thine kind and knowledgeable sir?
Ewing: Guess you want one of these snickers huh? [passing me a snickers from the bowl on his desk]
Chuckie: Well, it will transform me back to the athlete you wish you could’ve been!
EC III: In your dreams dude, now what’s the question?
Chuckie: Well this holiday when you are in the Lexus driving home after “The Law office of Ewing Carter III annual holiday party, how will the law know you’ve had too much to drink before you drive?
EC III: Well, first of all, I will be glad when that snickers kicks in you non-athelete! I can assure you I will be the last person on earth caught drinking and driving. Trust me, as part of my job I see
the repercussions up close and in person. Anyway, in most all fifty states, if a person is operating a motor vehicle and their blood alcohol content (BAC) is .08 or higher, they can be charged with
driving while impaired (DWI) / driving under the influence (DUI). A key consideration is that you can be impaired by any substance you ingest (alcohol, illegal drugs, and even prescription drugs). Generally, the “Officer of the Peace ,“ (policeman, Sheriff, DMV officer, Park Ranger, etc.) can make the decision to stop and investigate a person, if he/she has a “reasonable suspicion” to believe that the person is driving while subject to an impairing substance. Tell-tale signs are: weaving, speeding, driving too slowly, making too wide of a turn, just to name a few.
Chuckie: What should I do or say if I am stopped for DWI?
EC III: Well do what you did the last time, start crying and call me.
EC III: Seriously though, be as cooperative as possible. The officer will ask for your driver’s license and vehicle registration. He will be developing an opinion about “you”
to determine to whether further investigation is warranted. Noted signs of impairment are: slurred speech, obvious odor of alcohol, disheveled clothing, and bloodshot eyes.
Chuckie: If the officer asks me to take a breathalyzer test, should I comply, or refuse?
EC III: The decision is totally yours to make. However, there are some facts you should consider:
Chuckie: Whew, I guess the best thing is just not go there in the first place.
EC III: Let me record this time and date. The first time you ever said something that made sense.
Chuckie: I’m about to roll the credits on this interview. We taking this to the Racket ball court!
EC III: I’ll drive, you’ve obviously been drinking!