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.

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Saturday, October 12, 2013

I Heart Macro Week 22



at the junction of
both/and possibility
forms a heart of hope

hope used to scare me
more than the weight of despair
balloon string dangling

learning not to grasp
that which floats, uplifts vision
and keeps me grounded






Welcome to our Twenty Second Week of I Heart Macro

"Pure awareness transcends thinking... It allows you to look at the world once again with open eyes. And when you do so, a sense of wonder and quiet contentment begins to reappear in your life."~Mark Williams and Danny Pennman, from Mindfulness An Eight-Week Plan For Finding Peace In A Frantic World


It is time for YOU to share the love up-close with YOUR
I Heart Macro offerings!

Shine the Divine


Enjoy slowing down with your camera, paying full attention, observing beauty and curiosities many people pass right by. Your generosity of spirit and keen eyes may open the door to miniscule miracles and mirth others would not have access to otherwise. Feel free to include poetry, prose and thoughts your macro photo or series inspire(s) in you. Writing is completely optional for participation. Straight out of the camera (SOC), edited, color, black and white; anything goes as long as you bring the viewer near to whatever it is that drew your heart's attention and "woke you up" to full presence.

Please link back to my blog either using the button provided or by linking the words "I Heart Macro" back to my blog with this link: shinethedivinecreativityisaspiritualpractice.com. By sharing the link, visitors to your blog will learn about this meme and have a chance to participate as well if they so choose. 

Visit each other...
S  p  r  e  a  d  the  LOVE. Thanks :-)

linking to:





MS Update
If you are a regular visitor to my blog then you know I’ve been waiting for MRI results, lab results and a conversation with my doctor in regard to how to proceed in treating MS. Good news! The MRI shows no changes, which indicates that even at half the normal dosage the Gilenya is still working to protect me from new lesions forming. And even though my t-cells have not bounced back very much at all, my absolute lymphocyte levels are just a hair over the danger zone. As long as I stay above the magic number she feels ok keeping me on this medicine, because it is the only one that has worked for me up until now. She is going to check in with a leading immunological researcher and one more colleague, to be as sure as possible. The medicine is still very new and all the data is based on dosages given to people who are male, taller and considerably heavier than me. Unless I hear otherwise, the plan is to stay on this protocol and recheck my counts every two months. 

While I am not having an exacerbation (new lesions) I am experiencing a pseudo exacerbation, likely brought on by the stress of worrying about all of these low numbers. Continuous stress (which I have been enduring in relation to a series of consistently disturbing lab results since the end of July) releases hormones and other chemicals in the brain. This can and in my case did cause all of the physical symptoms I’ve been experiencing, by slowing down the neural superhighway, much like a full on MS exacerbation. All of this is real, not imagined, and while uncomfortable and frustrating it is also quite fascinating as it highlights the interconnection between mind and brain.  As a meditation teacher and person living with a brain disease, I find this all incredibly interesting! 

It seems as though the single dose of IV steroids is starting to make a difference.  If I do have another flare or pseudo flare, my doctor feels comfortable giving me a single dose of Solumedrol as needed, again, as long as my absolute lymphocyte levels remain above the magic number two hundred. Today I was able to walk into the doctor’s office, while last week I needed the aid of my wheelchair. My voice is still wonky, shifting randomly from being garbled from dysarthria, to a foreign accent, with fleeting appearances of my “normal” voice sprinkled here and there. I am less shaky, but still quite fatigued. I have no idea how long this episode will last, but I am hopeful that it won’t be too many more weeks. So I am watching hope float, not grasping, staying grounded, trusting that things will change, they always do.

69 comments:

  1. Sending you lots of distant healing reiki hugs to in your healing process ~ miracles do happen ~ carol, xo

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  2. Now that is good news! Rest and recoup while your body catches up with what you've learned ~

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  3. A lovely macro Laura.
    In our hearts we hold hope close.

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  4. The leaves are beautiful, both the color and B/W.
    That is good news. I hope your mind has been eased and you feel better soon.

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  5. My prayers for you and much love ...
    Thanks for more hosting of this wonderful meme.

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  6. I'm so happy for your good news and I hope you'll continue to feel better. Have a lovely Sunday!

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  7. Beautiful Laura......love is everywhere!

    Happy Sunday,
    Ruby

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  8. "hope used to scare me - more than the weight of despair" yes indeed the heady sense of possibly soaring more frightening than getting through the anchored sense of limited possibility. As usual beautiful, and brilliant and resonant with any who have a beating heart. <3

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  9. I really liked your poem on hope. Yes, sometimes it is frightening to hope, as if the hope is in vain, what they. But yet we DO hope (don't we?) and grasp those thoughts which turn our hearts & minds upward. And often, as frightening as hope can be, that which we hoped for does indeed happen. You have written a fine poem indeed this week.

    And I am hopeful as well that this recent difficult health period you are going through will be resolved. You sound hopeful too, and that is a good thing. Have a good week, Laura.

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  10. a heart full of hope is a beautiful thing...and there are def some things we need to learn to hold onto loosely for they are gone way too fast...cool found heart laur--

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  11. good news
    beautiful pictures
    thinking of you on walks
    with loved one
    and continual prayer
    sent your way...

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  12. Hope sometimes makes you think...do I grasp it and face the possibilities? .. something many struggle with...

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  13. I loved your poetry... it resonated with what I feel. Hope is a dangerous thing... it is bright but it has a dark side to it.
    -HA

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  14. Hope is such a lovely and fragile thing ~ But when it fills, we will lighter and empowered ~

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  15. sending healing, positive thoughts your way. I loved your poem and the gorgeous photos.

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  16. Dear Laura, it is so wonderful that your news was good and that there are no new lesions! And how interesting to see so clearly the mind/body connection. I am sending lots of healing energy and hope that you'll be up and about with energy in no time at all! Lots of love! Silke

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  17. So glad to hear you have GOOD news!

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  18. This is the update I was looking for. This is good news, but still in unknown territory.. hugs to you....Michelle

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  19. Great photos! That pretty heart with two leaves!

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  20. Beautiful sets of photos! Well done.

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  21. A nice B&W photo for the B&W theme!

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  22. Your words and your heart leaves are astoundingly beautiful. So great to get good news from the doc. I will watch hope float alongside you, and with both our imaginations at work we can hold hands to help keep you grounded. xo

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  23. Hope floats...and your words are touching and wise, Laura. Your photos, as always, divine. :) I'm hope your continue to improve and that you have plenty of rest and relaxation. Stress is such a hard thing to keep under control even when we know it does us no good.

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  24. I LOVE "at the junction...forms a heart of hope." Laura, your medical results must be a relief - they certainly are to me. And yes, huge connection between mind, body and spirit, as we know. A relief to hear the symptoms have been exacerbated by worry, as now you can feel less worried and gradually hopefully begin to feel some ease. No matter what you are going through, I NEVER come to your site without going away feeling inspired and heartened. Wow. You gift us so richly, through the days and weeks and months. Thank you.

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  25. Pretty two leaf heart, I love the colors! :)

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  26. This is beautiful Laura! Hope can be scary, especially at first maybe but good after some time. Good to read that the steroids are starting to make a difference.

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  27. Beautiful shots, and hope the steroid will continue to work its magic for you!

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  28. Lovely photos-and the black and white shows the lines of the leaves so well.

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  29. Glad to hear the good news, wishing you continued healing. Love the photos ... and yes, sometimes we have to let go of our grip ... free that balloon and surrender ... trust :)

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  30. Thank you for coming by sharing your creative photography on the second anniversary of Weekly Top Shot, #104!

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  31. Thank you for visiting my blog, Soul's Music. I've just spent some time exploring your site and find much that I agree with in your words and love the photography. Amazing stuff...

    Elizabeth

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  32. Laura, such wonderful news.
    My heart is overjoyed for you.

    Beautiful poem on hope and I love the macros.

    Oh, I just read your comment on my poem and how wonderful to know you are blessed with with a marriage of 25 years. I too am married to my 'best friend'
    I will continue to keep you in my prayers.

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  33. Beautiful image! I like both the colour and the b&w versions.

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  34. Thank you for hosting and for sharing your lovely photos and thoughts. Have a blessed week! <3

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  35. Beautiful photos ... all best wishes for you!

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  36. I'm happy for you about the good news.

    Great shot to, lovely in both versions.

    Irene

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  37. Your first three lines are a great lead-in to this contemplative piece.

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  38. Your words are full of hope, and your photos carry the same message. Keep going.

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  39. Visiting from Top Shot...enjoyed looking through all the macro thumbs and was a little confused that yours was a 20 seconds meme...like 20 seconds was enough time for a photo♫ But I see it is your 22 week...all is well♥ Thanks for visiting my blog..

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  40. Both images of the leaves with raindrops are beautiful.
    Thanks for visiting and your nice comment.

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  41. A heart made of red leaves, I like the rain-sprinkled look.

    Best wishes for your treatment and healing.

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  42. Dear Laura,
    To hear this good news is wonderful and your photo is amazing!!! There is everything in it! The colors of life, with rain and sunshine and the patience to grow!
    Great!!!
    I wish you all the best,
    Katrin

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  43. Beautiful heart of hope.
    Wishing you all the best.

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  44. Hello Laura, those leaves exude magical emotions, almost meditative, excellent. I love them whether black and white. Your photos are always inspiring! I didn't know about your MS, i hope the best for you is given. God is good. My prayers and positive thoughts go to your well-being. Take care.

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  45. What a wonderful spirit you have, Laura!
    This photograph is beautiful. I love the color, and you have captured so much detail.

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  46. Beautiful Laura! I love all the hope you offer :D

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  47. Your poem and images are stunning and sweet.

    My heart is with you.

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  48. Love your macro meme...I hope to join in sometime soon!
    Your second Haiku really spoke to me..."more than the weight of despair"...wow!

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  49. Great images and words Laura. And to top it all, positive results regarding your health!

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  50. Beautiful pictures and very good news concerning your health ! Hope for you that you continue to feel better and better !

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  51. Beauty abides here !
    I am glad you have good news with your MRI.
    Thank you Laura for visiting and leaving a lovely comment.
    What a blessing to have found you ~ and I am sure it is no
    coincidence.

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  52. Laura, gracias por tu visita a mi blog. es una entrada espectacular.
    Saludos..

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  53. I'm glad you got good news. So hard not to stress and worry over something like your health. Beautiful photos.

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  54. So happy to hear about your good results.

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  55. sending love...
    sue (GW)

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  56. an awesome image, grinning ear to ear!! happy to hear about your mri results...i had 3 does of steriods about 8 weeks ago and i am still feeling AWESOME!! i hate taking them but the results have been wonderful!!

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  57. Beautiful light on the leaves, Laura. Hopefully I will remember to hook up with I Heart Macro next week. ;)

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  58. I am so happy you have good results..Beautiful images and poem! Have a happy week!

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  59. Beautiful images, and I'm glad your news was positive!

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  60. Awesome detail on your shot, great in black and white!

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  61. Indeed, both photos are beautiful, Laura!!!

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  62. Beautiful photos Laura... I will think good thoughts for your T-cells. My B-cells cause problems so I try to visualize them being good. I will feel better after my appointment on Monday..well hopefully I will and I hope your symptoms calm down.. Stress is really detrimental and hard to control..hugs.. Thank you for linking into this week's Nature Notes...Michelle

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  63. Please link your Haiku My Heart to Rebecca’s Mornings with Mary: Loving Lupita.

    Let’s keep our haiku community going this Friday, while Rebecca is in San Miguel de Allende. Thank you!

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