Not Knowing

Do you remember learning something in school, maybe in first or second grade, and getting really excited about it? I do! I can recall the first time all the letters that had seemed jumbled together suddenly made sense and I started to read. It was like opening a magic door. From then on, school became the place where I learned something new every day and I was constantly struck by how much I didn't know. It felt like the more I learned, the more I realized how much more, new information was out there! It was exhilarating and it still is to this very day. There is a mystery about gaining access to previously unknown facts. While we can look something up, especially now with Google and the int

Push Yourself - Grow, Don't Shrink

One time, when my grandmother was probably in her late 70's or early 80's, I remember my mother asking her if she had any aches and pains. When my "Grammy" said, "Of course, I do", my mother went on to ask her why she kept going. I'll never forget Grammy saying, "If I stop, I'll never start up again. So, I keep on going." She lived to be 100 and only slowed down in the last six months of her life. Living with my grandmother for much of the time until I was in first grade taught me a lot of valuable life lessons. Mainly, I never saw her limited by age. It's not to say that she was a great athlete or adventurer (although, she left Nova Scotia as a single woman in her 20's to find her way in th

Your Best Friend

Whenever something keeps showing up in my life, I know it's trying to get my attention and I'd better notice. For the last several weeks I've been directed many times to YouTube videos about failing being a virtue. I've also been reminded, repeatedly, to watch how I speak to myself. One and then, the other, keep pushing their way into my consciousness. They will not be ignored. Ah, failure. For all of the successes in my life, and there have been many, failure is like the drop of ink that falls into a bucket of water and colors all of the rest of the liquid. Perceived or real defeat leaves a bad taste no matter how many victories surround and flavor it. It creates a kind of amnesia that make

Lessons in Compassion

Death and serious illness have run rampant in my life this year. In February my 88 year old mother passed on. Even though her health had not been good for several years and she would sometimes ask, "Why am I still here?", her actual passing was unexpected. She had been admitted to the hospital for some tests to see why she was in so much pain and she went from talking to the nurses to collapsing and dying in the wee hours of the morning. In some ways her death was a relief. Life was challenging for her, especially as she became more and more limited in her mobility and what she could do. My relationship with my mother was not an easy one. I've been looking back and reflecting a lot in the la

Upgrade to First Class

I remember the first time I heard someone quote Stephen Covey with this passage: "We are not human beings on a spiritual journey. We are spiritual beings on a human journey". Wow! It had quite the impact on me. It shifted my whole focus and sense of existence. My view of the mind-body connection and how I couldn't imagine separating one from the other clicked when I heard it. From there, I started thinking about my body as the precious container and carrier of my soul. Anything valuable that needs to be moved will be put in a special box or vessel and great care taken during the passage or excursion. Think about works of art that are transported from one museum to another. They're not just

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About the Author

Barbara L Cummings, MS, RN
is a sassy Queen-ager, mentor, confidante and trusted guide who provides people with life support. 

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© Barbara L Cummings 2020

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