Symptom Diary Card

Sunday, April 19, 2015

My Nightmares Trap Me

My sleeping habits and dreams continue to trap me, or are they a window to hope?  I wonder about this each day as I struggle to awaken from my dreams.  This morning I could hear my sweet cat Marilyn meowing in the ever so distant background as I struggled to go shopping for food.

I would walk off of the elevator and towards a chrome plated reception desk.  The smoke in the room softened all of the details, but clearly I was needed for an event.  I would register at the front desk, receive my card key and sluggishly open the door to my room.

Inside my room was the home of my grandmother Archuleta.  She was ill, and awaiting death.  My job in the family was to go buy food for everyone as they pray with grandma before and as she passes on to the heavens.   I saw people that I had met only once as a small child.

When I arrived at the market there was a sea of people crowding the fresh fish and meats.  The fresh meat market rested alongside a beautiful white sandy beach. The water looked so refreshing, I wanted badly to walk along the shore.

I was ordered to purchase fresh shrimp and chicken. The meat market containers display cases contained an overabundant number of orange nets, they were everywhere. The checkout lines, outlined with those mobile strap stands that you see in airports, were like a maze.  I got lost in the line.

By the time I made my way to the cash register the chicken meat had gone bad and had to be thrown away.  Once again I had to go back and get more chicken.  I got lost once again and the meat spoiled once again.  The third trip was different.  I reselected shrimp and took some other form of meat to the register.  I cannot remember what it was.

By the time I returned to grandma's house there were more guests and still not enough meat.  I was sent back to the market again. Feeling so exhausted, grieving for my grandma, fearing embarrassment because I could not remember the names of most of the relatives in the room.  I did not return again until the next day.

I cuddled up next to my grandmother, said I was sorry and started to cry.  This dream also had me staying in the same hotel,  needing to return to my mom, my mom who I miss so much.  I could not escape this darn hotel.  I was mandated to attend a seminar by some guy selling some "thing".  He was mean to me, berated me for not knowing information in his seminar.  Horrible feeling.

Oh what a nightmare.  I tried to escape.  My friend from high school was there too, and she was distraught for she was also trapped in the banquet room.  My mom needed me and I could not get to her.

I could hear my cat this morning calling for me, awakening me ever so slightly, but not enough.  I felt like a brick of iron on a magnetic mattress.   This is how all my nightmares are right now.  Instead of waking in a frightful state I stay trapped in them, waking up in sweats at the conclusion of the dream.

I woke up today up at 2pm.

This reminds me of a series of dreams I have had about mom.  They have happened all in the last 60 days, in a series of three, with distinct messages for me from God I believe.

The first dream mom and I were on the phone.  She was sitting in her car parked in the driveway. The sun must have been setting because I can see her there, squinting from the glare.  When she was alive she would sometimes sit in the car to get warm as she was constantly cold.

She dropped the phone and it fell under the seat somewhere and I could hear her crying and panicking because she could not find her phone.  I was telling her loudly, hoping she could hear me, that she would be OK.  I told her not to worry and that I was there.  I said not to cry, it will be alright. The dream stayed in that moment.  I found my body frantically fluttering around in the car, as if I were a little butterfly, trying to console her.  I must have gotten a phone call in the afternoon that finally woke me up from this nightmare.

The next dream mom was calling me from an elevator.  I could hear the vessel's movement, continuous, going in just one direction.  I feel like, because in my dream I was able to see her standing in the elevator, and the numbers were going up.  She was on her way to some specific place, a real destination.

She was looking up at the red digital display, of the numbers changing, increasing one by one.  She told me of the moment when the elevator went dark but said she was not afraid.  She even laughed, that sort of nervous laugh that demonstrates a hint of excitement and joy.  She told me not to worry.  I just listened on the other end of the line. The elevator kept going up and up and up and mom kept giggling. I can still remember the echo.

The next dream shows an outside garden party  There are 4 or 5 long tables, about 30 feet in length.  Each table is covered with elegant white linens, bouquets of flowers, candles and china.  The silver settings and crystal glassware shimmer in the twilight sky under the glass light bulb canopy.  I believe the drinking glasses were rimmed with gold.

Sitting on each side of the table are men wearing bright white robes adorned with silk sashes.  They are talking amongst themselves as they await the feast to come.  The air is crisp, fresh and it feels like a celebration is about to start.

Smack dab in the middle of all these men sits my mom, comfortable and gleeful in a chair.  She is neatly dressed, not sure in what, but she looks beautiful.  As if I am watching from a branch on a tree, she looks up at me as smiles with great joy.  She just beams, is radiant and happy.

She just does not stop looking at me and never stops smiling.  I feel like she is safe.  I did not want this moment to stop.  I wanted it to last forever, to see her loving face and feel that sense of serenity.  I reach out my arm to touch her but I cannot, she is too far away. Holding her hand is all I want to do.  Eventually I awaken from this dream. I still see her in the garden, I still see her smiling.  My heart still hurts, but not as much as before.

This most recent dream of mom told me that she is in heaven, for certain.  God now has her, God cares for her.  She will never suffer ever again.

I love you mom and may you be the angel who comes for me one day.

Peace and Blessings to you all!


My mom enjoying time with me in the springtime.

Friday, April 03, 2015

The Rosary That Heals Me and the Chaplet Of The Divine Mercy

Some of you may recall that in the days following my radical hysterectomy I draped my rosaries across my abdomen and scars.  I used all that I could find, sleeping with them and praying for relief from my pain and fear of dying. My family was very respectful of this and for that I am so very grateful.

Today is Good Friday, the most solemn day of the year. We witness the death of Jesus and remain with Him during his suffering and death. It marks the beginning of what is called a Novena, nine days of prayer, of praying The Chaplet of the Divine Mercy.

In case you are in need of prayer, healing or simply curious about this most blessed chaplet, here is a link to this prayer in song. Opening prayer precedes this most beautiful song of prayer.

This rosary belonged to my great grandmother, mother of my grandma, Candelaria.  When grandma passed away it was in the care of my aunt Sadie.  Before my aunt passed away, she gave it to me. This rosary is connected to my heart and soul and will remain in our family forever.

Peace and blessings to you on this most blessed day and may the healing spirit of Christ be with you now.



Monday, March 23, 2015

Angelina Jolie Shares Her Second Surgery With The New York Times

Angelina Jolie has stepped forward for a second time sharing her experience with doing everything she can to prevent cancer.  This time she journals of her heartfelt decision to try and prevent ovarian cancer.  Please select this link from the New York Times and share it with those you love.

Her words speak reality, uncertainty and hope.

I am one of thousands of grateful women who thank her for raising awareness of ovarian cancer and how we can strive to prevent it. 

God Bless Angelina.


Here are more links from news media about Angelina Jolie's decision:

KLG and Hoda on the Today Show


NBC News

Huffington Post

BBC News


Peace and Blessings


Sunday, March 15, 2015

I Didn't Know I Loved Gorillas So Much

Tonight something entirely unexpected happened after watching a "60 Minutes" segment, I knelt down on my knees sobbing.  It wasn't just one of those short hard cries that somehow finds a way to end with a giggle or sigh of relief.  No, this was one of those deeply sorrowful tearful, painful, agonizing moments when no solace could be found, except through God.

My cat doesn't know what to do during these rare moments because I cry out loud and can't breathe. It reminded me of the kind of crying that comes when someone you love dies.  I got shocked when I saw my red bleary eyed face in the mirror as I went to grab a tissue. Marilyn was probably hiding under the bed, poor kitty.

How did this evolve, you way wonder.  It was just a normal evening. I had turned on the television and found an episode already streaming on "60 Minutes" about a man who wants to save all the animals in captivity. Wonderful.  His name is Damian Aspinall.  Mind you, the segment had already begun playing and the images I saw were amazing.  I had missed the introductions. 

This man is frolicking with apes and playing with tigers.  Wow. I hear about his mission to end all zoos, including his, and I think "Fabulous"! Truly it is a Godly gift that any human can play with gorillas and live to tell about it.  This man is very special, I am thinking.

We see him teaching gorillas to live in the jungle after being in captivity.  Then this man takes them to a private island where these Godly creatures live freely and are safe. Upon his return, the gorillas are happy to see him, one especially.  The one gorilla loved this man so much he literally would not let him go. I am grinning from ear to ear, my heart is warm and fuzzy. 

Then we see this man has started, but not finished a bridge.  This bridge is the bridge to the real wild. It would allow the gorillas to leave this safe island haven of freedom in Africa. We are told that if they cross this bridge the gorillas will no longer be safe, they might die.  

I do not have the answers but I do know what isn't right.  Those gorillas loved him!  They trusted him and he let them walk the plank.

Dear Damian Aspinall,

Please no longer release the animals that love you, that trust you, into the wild.  Allow them to remain living with joy on your family estate in Africa and pledge your resources to stop animal cruelty and poaching.

Your ideal of closing all zoos is admirable. I pray you have learned that your beloved Gorillas need you to keep them safe on your island sanctuary.  You were given an exceptional gift from God that allows large wild animals to trust and love you.  Please honor that love and trust.