Staying Present In Traumatic Times

The last couple weeks were somewhat traumatic. First, my 15 year old dog had a seizure and possible stroke, and the next week a family member who has COPD (possibly emphysema) and MCI (mild cognitive problems) went into the hospital with pneumonia. It took be back to a time I’ve written about a lot, 2011-2013, with our other dog who had cancer and then neurological problems, and my mother who had Alzheimer’s and lung cancer.

This recent period felt like a “pop quiz” reminder of what I learned then. Or perhaps continuing education, as there’s always new awareness to be gleaned.

2010-2013 was a long, arduous process of ultimately midwifing my mother (my dog, and later my father) back to Spirit. Each of them had their own exiting process, each had different circumstances and choices to be made.

It’s a shock when it first happens, and it’s easy to feel that things are out of control. When my mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s (right as we had finished paying off the dog’s cancer surgery), it was a breakdown in my own reality as well.

However, for the most part, I remembered to keep a higher awareness, while external circumstances seemed to crumble. It would have been easy to have collapsed in a heap, but reframing reality helped. This was *not* a crisis but an event.

I reminded myself that I was powerless over events and other people’s reactions to them, but not necessarily my own. I had choice over my actions (and response as best I could). I worked hard at being mindful, researching and asking for advice before making important decisions.

I also learned to not resist what is. I thought I could combat the Alzheimer’s, get her into a memory program, give her the right nutrition, do my energetic healing, etc. But it was like trying to stop a river with outstretched fingers. When she was diagnosed with cancer, and the initial treatment didn’t work, it shifted my focus to quality of life (rather than longevity).

It would have been a waste of energy to resist the little things, becoming my mother’s parent, her eventually confusing me with her older sister who died in 1997.

It was important to stay focused on the important things (creating moments of joy for my mother). And to stay in present time, as I was back in my old home town that I left in 1981 and interacting with some people who hadn’t talked to me in ten years.

I had to stay the grown up, the one responsible for life and death decisions, and do the next indicated thing that was best for all concerned.

This is all coming back to me as I observe my other dog age, and as this family member is navigating this part of their life path. It’s different now, I’m only peripherally in this family member’s life, and this current dog isn’t doing so bad for 105 in people years.

We all have (at least) two parts to ourselves. The physical personality that reacts to situations and runs off of memories tinged with emotions. And the greater aspect of ourselves, Consciousness, that encompasses the bigger picture.

When you see things from that bigger picture viewpoint, and can let yourself as Consciousness be the one that makes decisions and takes action, it’s so much easier to get through painful and traumatic times.

You’re not in denial about what’s happening, you can still be grieving the loss of what it was like before, but you’re able to hold a bigger space, respond with greater inner authority.

We’re in traumatic times even if our daily lives are going well. The world seems to be falling apart, when it’s really Consciousness reorganizing reality.

Shift your perspective to Consciousness and you will inwardly know that all is very, very well.

©2017 Joan M. Newcomb, CPC

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