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At 6 A.M., I awoke with this dream:

It is night. I am with an animated group of seniors who intend to work on their life reviews in a large well-lighted room with tables and chairs.

The dream story begins at night, always symbolic of endings, closure, especially of life. Within darkness, change inevitability occurs.

I do not recognize the animated group of seniors who I’ve joined, but I appreciate their willingnessto engage in this endeavor. On a deeper level, however, perhaps they mirror the health of my psyche, still engaged in my life review that began with my 2001 retirement from hospice. Self-publishing two memoirs in 2012 and 2015 was its tangible start.

Since then, ongoing Twelve-Step work has kept me abreast of current slips and need for amends, mostly to myself for the snare of fear based-obsessive thinking. As an example, last night’s email about my credit card distraught me until its fraudulence was determined. 

But my Dreamer seems to be asking more—perhaps deeper prayer to recall my dreams upon awaking, to scrutinize practices of acceptance, responsibility, forgiveness, and love. True, my Heartwhisperings blogs have brought to light some of the dark recesses of my psyche where more of my flawed character hangs out, still unbeknownst to me.

My ongoing life review spirits each gift of twenty-four hours: Within them, lies psychic transformation, impossible to attain on my own.

“Do you accept birthday presents before your birthday?” asked the hospice nurse, her voice filled with smiles behind her mask. I warmed beneath her compassionate gaze as she sat opposite me at my dining room table for my check-up. She tittered as she withdrew a small gift from her bag and handed it to me.

“Such a surprise,” I said unwinding the silver tie around the cellophane, trying to make out its content—Something thumbnail size and yellow. Then, I shook it onto the table and fingered the Seed of Happiness in my hand: its disarming smile touched me. Curious, I thought, then heard the story of this simple product, handcrafted and distributed from The Smile Factory, near by. Since its 2007 inception, phenomenal growth of this bauble has occurred, worldwide. Its secret: their recipients, heartened by the reminder, are urged to send them to others, also struggling with life.

The more I reflected upon the dynamics of my Seed of Happiness, the more I was reminded of Alcoholics Anonymous and Step Twelve: …tried to carry this message to those who suffer …  

this message is none other than Higher Power’s unconditional love for all of us. To become such carriers requires disciplining our self-centeredness and cultivating regard for the needs of others. So, whether we’re sending a Seed of Happiness to a sufferer or listening to another’s story of addiction, the similarity exists.

Higher Power has many disguises, including the Seed of Happiness…

The great timbered door stands ajar, its light brilliancing the hardwood floor: So unexpected, so frightening, an irritant to eyes accustomed to living within the grip of shadows.

I had glimpsed this light earlier in life; its empowerment had led me to receive my First Holy Communion, to enter the convent, and to enter marriage. Glimmers of this light also appeared in dreams and provided the next right word when sitting at my word processor. It also supported multiple knee surgeries and convalescences. My life, such as it was, unfolded in fits and starts, within consciousness of God’s presence.

Much has already changed during my eleven months of hospice care, with yet another invitation from the light in the offing. From my accustomed shadows near the door’s threshold, I squint and rub my eyes. Occasional spurts to explore this realm have faded into worn sneakers: useless, lethargy of the tried and true weighting my spirit. Besides, I’m no longer strong enough to open this door. I would need help.

So I wait, continuing my daily routine of self-care, now assisted by spirited helpers, themselves waiting in their own way for significant signs manifesting among us. Buoyancy, mirth, and pregnant silence fill my home. Before I know it, another day gives way to night’s dreams with their continuing direction.

I trust, in time, the great timbered door will open of its own accord. Unlike previous visitations of the light, I will remain—As will others.

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