Shine the Divine:

Creativity IS a Spiritual Practice

When we see through our hearts, we recognize that every single one of us is infused with creativity. Divine Sparks are embedded in everyone and everything. It's up to us to be courageous, to look and listen deeply, to find the sparks, gather and release them back into the universe, transformed into something new. Join me as we wake up to the sacred-ordinary blessings waiting to greet us each and every day.


Friday, December 16, 2011


Looking back at photos from a drive in the country, this time last year, I am remembering that I could not stand up without falling down back then. How it seemed that the MS was progressing more rapidly than anyone expected. How I was using the wheelchair in the house and had to be carried up and down the stairs. How we were considering making significant, expensive accommodations to our home since it looked at that point like walking was pretty much a thing of the past. How grateful I was/am that the doctors figured out that one of my medications was increasing my symptoms, and how that led down the road to a different treatment plan.

I wish I could say that I am able to walk for long distances, to dance, to hike, to drive, to move freely without difficulty, that the new medicine reversed all the damage, but that is not the case. Fatigue is a stealth operator, and randomly dictates the flow of each day. Coordinating movement is often a challenge, and my voice unpredictable, particularly when I am tired. Still, I am stronger than I was a year ago and can stand still and balanced like this beautiful tree without falling down, even walk a bit before tiring and the shaking starts. Some days are easier than others. I can do some household tasks like throw in a load of laundry, or sometimes help with the dishes. I was even able to enjoy an evening out with friends over Thanksgiving…an EVENING out! That is no small feat; one friend living with chronic illness recently shared with me that for her going out in the evening is an adventure, not approached without serious consideration for the after effects of such an excursion “after-hours” (past 8pm). I couldn’t agree more! After 6, I am pretty much done for the day. 

I thank God and my doctors for the improvements in my health. It is good to look back and reflect on a year, on the unexpected blessings and respond with a joyful “AMEN!”

Reflecting upon the year that is coming to an end, closing your eyes, exhaling, inhaling, opening your eyes...send me an email that expresses what your are grateful for in THIS moment...I will add your message to this year's Gratitude Quilt. I currently have 75 quilt squares gathered, and would love to hear from YOU too!

Click to see the rules and to take a badge for yourself.


  1. I always love reading your posts Laura. I am left with such a deep sense of gratitude.

    I think I already wrote something for the quilt, but...

    I'm grateful for the love that exists in my family. It reminds me that love can grow, and I pray it envelopes the entire human family.

  2. Amen!

    You embody gentle steps, Laura. Blessings to you ~

  3. hurray for you and your family, that this year is not last year. :)

  4. Amen!
    Touching.. and a very nice pictures.

    God bless you Laura:-)

  5. Amen sweetest Laura. I haven't been around here (or anywhere else for that matter) for awhile - life threw in a monkey wrench (well, a few!) and I've been spending my time doing those things that need to be done and it takes up pretty much all of my time and energy. Yet, I read your words and feel ashamed that I am at times so weak to give in to the exhaustion and depression that I spend some days in a state of non-existence. I read your words and know that your pain and limitations are greater than mine and it humbles me and screams out to me that I am what I choose to be. On most (many) days, I am filled with gratitude and hope but there are those few days here and there that suck all life energy and I just wait for the day to end so I can wake up the following day in better spirits. Never been a fan nor a good friend of melancholia yet sometimes it visits and wants to stay but I am mostly rude to it and neglect its friendship. I find that with me, when physical pain becomes a daily thing it wears me down on so many levels. But then I read your words....

    You are such a light and inspiration and just reading your words puts me in a state of tranquility and peace and hope....

    Much love,

  6. Hooray for you indeed! So good to learn that things have gotten better for you and your family, Laura! Much to be grateful for! Here's wishing you and your family a beautiful Christmas!


  7. This photo is Zen; silent; in the moment; and authentic.

    God is not dead, God is not invisible, God is authentic.

    I see God in your art. I feel God in your sharing and the ways you navigate your path. I know God better for your commitment to life.

    You remain in my thoughts and prayers, you remain with me, handmaiden of the Lord God.

    I am thankful for your progress and your doctors.

    Thank you.

  8. Your words are an inspiration and your photo, a treat for the eyes. I'm glad to hear you are feeling better and stronger.

  9. You are one of the most graceful and grace-filled people it's my privilege to know, Laura.

  10. Your posts are always an uplifting read! I always have a better outlook when I leave here than when I came. :)
    Thank you for inspiring.

  11. What a beautiful post. I am thakful for my life and my family.

  12. You're an inspiration, Laura. You have the best outlook of most anyone I "know."

  13. Thank you for sharing part of your story Laura; it is inspiring and God loves an overcomer who still finds time and energy to be grateful for Him, His love, grace, mercy and provision. May your weekend (and Christmas) be especially blessed.

  14. I ditto Rebecca's words. I'm shamed at the silly stuff that messes w/ my head knowing what you've been through and yet you amazingly make me see gratitude in the simple joys of everyday life. Thank you.

  15. Very interesting! Have a nice day!

  16. Those of us who live with chronic illness and pain must persevere and do all that we can do no matter our age. My scholiosis is worsening rapidly, and I am finding I am doing less and less. I still go to work at my school, but have to carry two Tens units with me for pain, a cooler with freezer chilled ice packs, pain medication, and sit only in a rocker where I am not erect and my neck is supported. I feel blessed and so fortunate I can do what I do, but this will have to be the last year. I can really relate to the evening thing. I get home at 4:00 and by 6:00 I have eaten a bit of dinner and am in bed. That is all I can handle. Please take care. I am so thankful the doctors changed the meds and you are better than you were. Meds and the side effects can be wicked. I have only had one friend with MS and it is rough. My thoughts are with you. I am sure you feel like that tree many of your days just as I do....leaning and about to fall into the pond. Hugs, genie

  17. Laura,
    Your carefully selected photos and intricately placed words are always an inspiration to me. I think of you and your inner strength, and honest gratefulness and I am awed.
    A resounding "Amen" is added from me.

  18. What a wonderful, wonderful gift to read this morning. Open the healing channels! Blessings to you and yours, Always.

  19. "...still and balanced like this beautiful tree..." is SO good, Laura. We do what we can do... and sometimes then some. An attitude of gratitude goes a long way to making the minutes count. AMEN to feeling better. May the JOY of the season be yours.

  20. Very peaceful . . .
    My best wishes to you:)

  21. The photo is so beautiful Laura, as are your words. You are one of the most courageous women I know.

  22. i am so glad and thankful for these small improvements to your daily life.

  23. Oh what a beautiful image, Laura. I am grateful for so many things but at this moment i am grateful that you are stronger than you were last year.


Bright Sparks: