Welcome to Following the Whispers blog

Thank you so much for taking the time to visit. Hope you enjoy your stay. I blog here whenever I feel the need. This blog was created at the time my memoir came out, in February, 2009. Its motto was: creating a life of inner peace and self-acceptance from the depths of despair. Now, my focus is sharing this journey we call life.

“Only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth, and that is not speaking it.” Naomi Wolf

“We are called human beings, not human doings.” Wes Nisker, Buddhist teacher

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs…(And) if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.” Theodore Roosevelt

Tuesday, May 19, 2009


I used to believe in "happily ever after" fairytales, spending much of my time trying to reach that fantasy land. Now I know there is no such thing. We get moments. Moments of bliss; moments of joy; moments of laughter; moments of tears; moments of sadness; moments of fear; moments of...well, you get the idea.

Until a few years ago, my life was spent on auto-pilot, not fully present inside my own skin. Living life unconsciously, one misses the moments. They whirl by like a blustery wind or crawl like a tortoise. I'm so grateful I'm more awake and aware now. I wouldn't have wanted to miss my mother-in-law's, "It's so nice to have a mother," comment to me after helping her pick out some new clothes yesterday.

"Mother?" I asked, mistakenly thinking she meant I was her mother. Her dimentia couldn't have gotten that bad so quickly.

"I lost my mother when I was real young," she said. "Then I was taking care of my kids. Now you're taking care of me. Thank you."

Hard as it is sometimes to be caretaker to an aging parent, it's moments like that which make it worthwhile.


P.S. Talk about happy moments - check out this blog for a joyful moment from yesterday:



Anonymous said...

Hmm, yes - touching. And such good karma also. My Mom is 82 and still living independently, but hard for her to get around and do lots of things she needs to do anymore. She lives within driving distance (couple hours) of me and one of my brothers. We visit her two Sundays a month to do her grocery shopping, chores needing to be done, stuff like that. And twice a year, Spring and Fall, all four brothers get together for a weekend at her place to do the more major things like winterizing and Springerizing (is that a new word? LOL) the house.

Anonymous said...

Aw, this is sweet! Thanks for sharing. Your posts always seem to tell us something about you as a person. Thanks for making them personal.

Helen Ginger said...

What a great story. Made me choke up a little. There are often times I stop and think about my mother and wish she were still here. Enjoy your mother-in-law.

Straight From Hel

Jane Kennedy Sutton said...

It's so easy to let the small joys of life slip by unnoticed. Thanks for the reminder to take time appreciate those special moments while we can.

Jane Kennedy Sutton

conarnold said...

Thank you for sharing this sweet story and important reminder to enjoy those special moments in life, Karen.

Patricia Stoltey said...

I like the changes you made to the blog, Karen. Nice job evaluating the critiques and following through.

Your mother-in-law's comments are so poignant. Our elder parents face enormous challenges on a daily basis. What a blessing that you live close enough to assist her regularly.


N A Sharpe said...

Excellent post. My mom has dimentia. It is very difficult when the roles reverse. Celebrate the moments my friend, they are precious. Thanks for the reminder.


K. A. Laity said...

It's so important to be here now, always. The hardest thing. A friend sent me a lovely card that sits on the shelf in front of me with a quote from Thich Nhat Hanh: "Our true home is in the present moment. To live in the present moment is a miracle." So much of our time is spent worrying about the past or future, we forget to live NOW. It's all we really have.

The Practical Preserver said...

All we have is now.