Longevity Tip

If you want to live a long, healthy life, make sure you’re among the nonsmokers. Smoking contributes to heart disease, osteoporosis, emphysema and other chronic lung problems, and stroke. It makes breathing during exercise much harder and thus can make activity less enticing. It appears to compromise memory, too.

The news does get better. People who quit smoking can repair some, if not all, of the damage done. After a smoker quits, the risk of heart disease begins to drop within a few months, and in five years, it matches that of someone who never smoked. 

Source
Advertisements

Healing Power of Love

M’s Advice

M opened my eyes to the lessons grieving was teaching me and to the wonderful gift called life. It’s a one time gift. I decided the best way to honor Babe, was to discover how to live again. No one ever said it would be easy, but I’ve never quit. M offered me a final piece of advice I try to connect with each day. Here is M’s advice to me from Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again:

“M took hold of both my hands, “Ray, each day you will meet new people. You’ll feel love flowing to you, through you, and drenching you. You’ll know, perhaps for the first time, that nothing is more important, nothing is better than responding in the moment by offering your unconditional love to whoever is with you in the moment. Trust it, Ray. Trust it, and the power of love will heal you.”

Ordering information for the paperback or ebook version of Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again may be found at https://dancingalone530.com/dancing-alone/

Excerpt From: Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again by Ray Calabrese. This material is protected by copyright.

Love Doesn’t Die

M encouraged me to trust my instincts. She told me my instincts were my internal GPS and would guide me on the grieving path to walk toward healing, health, and happiness. Here is an excerpt from my journal in Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again:

“How do I move into the future toward healing, health, and happiness without Babe? My instincts tell me opening myself to receiving and giving love is the key to the rest of my life. It doesn’t matter if I am grieving or not grieving. When Babe was alive, we both were open to giving and receiving love. Our love did not die because Babe died. My love for Babe endures. I will never stop loving her. Babe has my heart. The more I love, the larger my heart will become. I will be like the Grinch in the Dr. Seuss Christmas story and movie.”

Ordering information for the paperback or ebook version of Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again may be found at https://dancingalone530.com/dancing-alone/

Excerpt From: Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again by Ray Calabrese. This material is protected by copyright

Each Day I Stumbled Forward

Each Day I Stumbled Forward

My neighbors told me over and again it gets better with time. No it doesn’t. But I got up each morning, put on my best smile, and stumbled forward. Stumbling forward became my metaphor for not quitting. A tiny spark, deep within me flickered with the desire to learn to live again. M spoke honestly to me about stumbling forward. She had a similar experience when her husband was killed in a car accident. Here is a an excerpt from Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again:

“I feel as I’m stumbling forward, M. You know how it is, two steps forward and then I step on a rock, causing me to lose my balance. I stumble to the ground—always forward, never backward.”

“I like the metaphor,” M said. “Stumbling forward describes how I felt during my periods of intense grieving. . . . I had to learn new ways to live. I learned to do many things Peter previously did for me. I didn’t want to learn to do them, I had to stumble forward. I had to grow. . . . Don’t count the times you stumble, Ray. One day you’ll wake up and realize you’re walking without stumbling. You’ll stop walking or doing whatever you’re doing and give thanks to God. Until the moment arrives, continue to stumble forward.”

Ordering information for the paperback or ebook version of Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again may be found at https://dancingalone530.com/dancing-alone/

Excerpt From: Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again by Ray Calabrese. This material is protected by copyright.

We Are All Wounded

M became an indispensable guide during the height of my grieving. At one point, where I was wallowing in self pity, she challenged me to make peace with the past. I reacted predictably and spoke of my wounds. I forgot, for a moment, M also suffered a similar loss. Here is an excerpt from Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again:

“We are all wounded, Ray. Wounds heal and leave scars. We all carry scars. Our scars are an important part of our story. Each scar is sacred. Each of us purchased our scars at great cost. You’re transforming your raw wounds into holy scars. In time, each scar will be a reminder of Babe’s death and the grieving you endured. More importantly, each scar will become the symbol of choosing to live. The symbols are a part of the story, but not the whole story. Do you understand what I’m saying?”

Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again. Available in paperback and ebook formats from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iTunes, and Kobo.

Excerpt From

Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again

Raymond Calabrese

This material is copyright protected

Tough Advice: Stop Making Excuses

M challenged me with Tough advice when she told me to Let go of the past and move forward. The more deeply I felt my loss, the tighter my bonds to the past became. Each time M challenged me to let go of the past, I made an excuse not to let go. M finally challenged me to let go of my excuse making. It wasn’t easy, but as M told me, I had a choice. Here is an excerpt from Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again where I wrestled with this decision.

“It’s easier for me to live in the past where I was happy rather than figure out how to live in the present in a way that added meaning to my life and held on to the hope that happiness would one day find me again. I realized I developed excuse-making into a professional skill as excuses rolled off my tongue as easy as grass turns green in the spring.

If I really wanted to dance with suffering and grieving, I would need to let go of what held me to the past with a death grip and not make excuses about moving forward. Easier said than done, but I would give it my best. I wanted to dance with grieving.”

Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again. Available in paperback and ebook formats from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iTunes, and Kobo.

Excerpt From

Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again

Raymond Calabrese

This material is copyright protected

Dare to Live

Whether grieving or not grieving, I’ve met many people who are alive but not living. There is a big difference. In Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again, M challenges me to dare to live. Here is an excerpt:

“I’m sharing what I learned from my experience. You’re strong enough to start taking dares. Trust God that in the areas where you’re weak, He is strong. Dare to act, Ray. Dare to do the things you don’t want to do. Dare to live life, and grieving will gradually disappear. … Our two biggest obstacles are excuse-making and not letting go of the past. If you really want to live life and let grieving slip away, stop making excuses and let go of past …”

Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again. Available in paperback and ebook formats from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iTunes, and Kobo.

Excerpt From

Dancing Alone: Learning to Live Again

Raymond Calabrese

This material is copyright protected